Monday, 26 September 2011

Some Culture. For a Change.

Up to the pleasing bi-lingual town of Trento to sing a Mass at the Duomo with the choir. It's a good place to visit because it has the best of Italy (food, wine, architecture) and the best of Germany (people don't park on the pavements). On the Sunday we all went to the town's impressive castle, the (literally) Good Advice Castle. There was an exhibition on the trading and cultural relationship between the Med and the Alps, which wasn't as mind-numbingly dull as one might expect. At the entrance there was this chap, sorry it's a bit blurred. Now, that's a tummy!

On show were some wonderful pieces like this beautiful terracotta bust from the third century BC.
 And this exquisitely fine gold crown, made for a Gallic princess's funeral in the 4th century BC. She had three in her tomb near Ancona apparently, but the other two were lost. There are myrtleberries, flowers and leaves, all worked together. 
 And then just to reassure you lot that I haven't taken complete leave of my senses, this is a wonderful white wine that Bruno and I discovered in a bar in a small town on the way back home. Custoza is a blend of local whites from near Verona, there's usually some Trebbiano and Garganega along with whatever else they have to hand. Lip-smackingly good. Doubt if you'd find it in Blighty. The joy of Italy!

Monday, 12 September 2011

All Bunched Up

 As I may have posted before (and can't be bothered to check), grape picking is not some bucolic, idyllic pastime. It is backbreaking, hot, uncomfortable and seemingly without end. There are wasps and mosquitoes, the constant threat of the picker on the other side of the row of vines clipping off one of your pinkies with his/her secateurs as you both go for the same stem, bunches of grapes that don't hang down temptingly but have grown around one of the many training wires. And the heat, oh the bloody heat and the sweat.
 Anyhoo, we stopped for a a couple of rolls at lunchtime, our motley crew, Albanians, Italians and one extremely red-faced Brit. I ate one roll with salami and another with Parma ham and drank about a litre of sparkling water.
Bruna had the right idea 'though, perched in the shade of the tractor cab.
As you might imagine your correspondent will be paid in kind, not in cash.