Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Up in Them Hills

 Up to the mountains towards Austria, in the Trentino region, for another wine-fuelled choir party. Above is the hotel where Bruno and I stayed. Interesting place, the weather vane features a beer tankard.
 I don't know if you can see but the clock in the hotel bar shows 9.15 (in the morning of course) and there are already some hearty local types who have downed a couple of glasses of red wine to get the day off on the right foot. I feel almost ashamed to say that I had a coffee. Honest.
 At the party itself this demijohn holds 54 litres of Teroldego, a very quaffable local red. Bruno and I gave it our best shot. The pottery pitchers were a nice touch.
In this rather dramatic picture, the lady is firing up a small cigar. Brava!

Monday, 8 August 2011

The Joy of Travel

Sensible, relaxed Italy where one can still have a pleasing glass of Merlot at a motorway service station. Or a beer. Or a Grappa.
Maybe that's why Italy has some really sensational, extravagant multi-vehicle accidents on its autostrade.

Monday, 1 August 2011


I cannot remember a summer like this, in terms of the weather, which has been uniformly awful. But, remarkably, awful without a drop or rain. It's been dry with some serious gales which often saw the garden furniture sailing merrily over the fence. The tomato plants took a real hammering in a particularly bad rain-free tempest about six weeks ago and they've never really recovered. Once Italians used to compliment me on the size and abundance of my tomatoes. Now little groups of horribly-inbred wall-eyed locals stand just outside the gates, pointing at me and cackling with cruel humour at my discomfiture. I try and chase them away with comments like "Hey Benito, that's a nice tooth you've got" but they soon re-assemble and carry on with their gurning and grinning.