Saturday, October 18, 2014


There are lots of things to see in Italy (understatement).  Closest to us is the Tower of Pisa.  It’s about a 30 minute drive from our farm.DSCN0304  DSCN0303
The city of Pisa is not too exciting.  Crowded with tourists and not really picturesque.
DSCN0270 The Campo dei Miracoli, Field of Miracles, is what we have come to see. 
DSCN0253 After buying tickets for a specific entry time, we are allowed into the tower for a somewhat guided tour.  The guide is more for crowd control than anything.DSCN0273 The guide does give a short introduction and history of the tower and then frees the group of 30 to climb.DSCN0281  DSCN0279
There is some screening to keep people from falling out, but safety is not the real focus here.DSCN0284    DSCN0287
The views from the top are great.  The view from the leaning side is not so fun if you are like me and don’t like overhanging high places.
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The climb was not so bad.  Going down was much harder on my knees.  There are no hand rails and I had to use my legs to lower myself each of the over 300 steps.

Friday, October 17, 2014


We decided to spend my 75th birthday in Italy.  Every since I read “Under the Tuscan Sun” I’ve been pulled to spending some time in a small village in Tuscany.  This is where we have come.DSCN0508

It’s a small village outside of Lucca, about 6 miles.  We flew into Pisa and rented a car and drove to the farm.  DSCN0437 DSCN0433 DSCN0520 Our rental car is very small, a Lancia,  and works great on the narrow switch back roads.  DSCN0499 The day we arrived, we had a dinner in our apartment.  Our landlady provided us with dry pasta, a sauce, a bottle of wine, and enough necessities to get us through the first night.  After dinner, we went to bed and slept for 14 hours without waking.  



The next day, after exploring Lucca and doing some shopping, we returned to our farm where we had arranged to have an Italian cooking class.  DSCN0221 DSCN0235

The other guest at the farm are from Australia.  It turned out to be a wonderful night of sharing and getting acquainted, all the while learning how to make gnocci, bruschetta, and tarimusu.  DSCN0238 DSCN0243 What a great introduction to Italy.