A week in the north; a week in Tuscany.... Woo Hoo!
Day 3 & 4 in Italy — Lago D'orta; dinner at Il Talucco; and off to the mountains for one night...
So yesterday was Wednesday I think and I want to catch everyone up. Now it is thursday but will fill you all in. Wednesday afternoon, after we lounged around at Il Talucco, we went with another set up David's FB friends for a trip to Lago D'Orto. They are Lisa and Ale- Lisa is from California and is married to Ale who is from Italy. We went in their little Citron to the lake where you take a water taxi first to a little island and then across the island to the village of Orta San Guilo. It has been wonderful meeting all these new friends and look forward to seeing them again. The island at Lago D'Orta is a monastic sanctuary- a little loop around brings you all the way around. Alex was a great guide and shared that this was a leper colony in the past but now is a retreat center and also they are working on building up the tourist angle.
Then we went across to San Guilo- a lovely little village with very Italian feeling. We walked around- sat at an outdoor cafe in the square- had caffe, wine sprits, gelato and good conversation. David had a local beer which was very good. I bought some interesting food items at a little grocer, some pretty colored bow-tie noodles, all different, dried mushrooms, risotto and pesto. We will see if they get eaten by us before I return to the US. It may be difficult to resist.
Then last night we had the most wonderful dinner party. We were 8 in all and had dinner with all at Il Talucco. Thanks to Valentina and Nico the meal was terrific and lively. I think we were either in the movie "Under the Tuscan Sun" or "Eat, Pray, Love." Present at the dinner were Irene and her mother Erica, Lisa and Ale, David and I of course, and then Valentina's mother Teresa — and occasionally Valentina in between serving. The language was Italian- english mix and very lively with much wine, grappa and food. Also, some very interested and lively discussions over the wine and grappa. There were many different flavors of Grappa that Valentina brought out for us all to try. Whew- too much Grappa last night. I can't begin to describe it all but is was just a wonderful evening. Grappa with basil, with rose hips, and many others.
Today David and I drove up to the mountains after first going into Biella and taking the funicular up to the old city. Again, so many old and beautiful buildings, courtyards and terraces. I told David to do a series of photographs on courtyards and terraces. We continued driving north and stopped at Valera which also has a Sacrat Mount that David wanted to stop at. We took another funicular up that mountain. Now we are Compertogno- staying for just one night at a local riverside lodge so that we could come up to the mountains. I know David will be posting many photos for you to enjoy. Tomorrow we return to Biela and stay one more night with our new family before heading to Tuscany on Saturday. Till another time....
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David & Ellen Aimone
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