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Autumn Comes To Chianti

Benvenuti and Welcome to all my Lovely Followers,

If you are new to this column I should tell you that each month I reflect back on the previous one, which in this case is October 2017. My aim is to bring you lots of fun things, and not too many serious ones.On the very first day of October, the temperature dropped, the brick floors in our converted monastery farmhouse got cooler, so out came the rugs and we ordered in the logs for the fireplace. Looking forward to a crackling log fire always lifts my spirits.

Meanwhile, the countryside started to glow with autumn colours and the season began for funghi (porcini mushrooms), castagne (chestnuts) and the wonderful tartufo bianco (white truffle). We began indulging in the gorgeous meals being produced in our local restaurant, C’era Una Volta, that included wood grilled whole giant porcini mushrooms, shavings of the precious white truffles sprinkled over buttered tagliatelli and a heavenly pumpkin sauce and pasta with a covering of grated smoked ricotta! Mmmm.

Back in Fiano, we continued to enjoy our morning coffee at La Dispensa and caught up on the national and local papers. There was a big two page spread about that stunning fifty-something actress, Monica Belluci, she of the famous smooch with Daniel Craig in ‘Spectre’. I have always loved Sophia Loren, who still scrubs up really well in her eighties and long may she reign. But now we have Monica, and I have no doubt at all that she will still be around like Sophia, wowing all those she meets!

On the music scene, I read that the strange and clever electronic band,
Kraftwerk, were touring here. Do you remember them? They are German and went to the top of the charts in the 70’s. Despite my preference for rock music, I did actually like some of their stuff. In Wikipedia, it says that they were formed in 1969 and the line-up remained unchanged until 2008 when Florian Schneider stepped down. They have produced three successful albums and continue to tour with the four remaining members. As I have mentioned before, the Italians love the old bands and concerts are sold out very quickly here in Tuscany!

The papers also had lots of mentions about the elections in Sicily and how the result would affect the rest of Italy. The senior members of each party did their thing on the hustings, supporting the local candidates. These included former Prime Ministers Silvio Berlusconi at the age of eighty-one and the much younger Matteo Renzi, the pretty boy of the politics and the former Mayor of Florence.

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Of course autumn also heralds the start of the rugby season. You may recall that we are a great rugby family and our grandson currently plays for Siena Rugby under eighteens, known as I Ghibellini. The team is doing really well and won every game they played in October!

Looking at the list of exhibitions in the paper, I was drawn to one being held at The Florence Art Gallery towards the end of the end of the month. It was a one-man exhibition by Luciano Pasquini, who loves to paint land and seascapes in vibrant colours, that I love. No doubt aimed at the mass market, the website is quite dazzling due to the range of colours. So if you visit the site, hone in on your favourite colour and Bob’s your Uncle! Try and translate that into Italian!

Oh, not to forget, there was and still is a lot of interest in the filming of the new Medici series. Whilst being filmed in the stunning medieval hill top town of Montepulciano, over five thousand visitors a day were recorded! They are now filming in Volterra, which is not quite so accessible, but our daughter and family live close by, so they have been there spotting the famous including Sean Bean!

Well, I hope you enjoyed the read, and look forward to hearing from you. Also, look out for my Christmas Books announcement; watch this space!

Salute June x