Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ah, Italy!

Ciao, friends!

We made it back from Italy.  What an experience for the senses it was - the tastes, the sights, the sounds!  Warm breezes, blue skies, blue waters, red wine, salty anchovies, bright and beautiful vegetables, impeccably dressed Italians whizzing by on mopeds and motorcycles,  the hypnotic sound of water lapping against the side of the ferry, the musical sound of Italians speaking their language to one another, the scent of bread baking, that first bite of pistachio gelato, oh my.  Words can't do it justice.  It was an absolute pleasure to soak it all in, and I am still soaking in the memory of it all.

I so wanted to fill my suitcase with practically everything we saw - beautiful vegetables!  Delicate glass jewelry!  Prosciutto!  Bottle after bottle of wine!  Espresso!  Espresso makers!  Pasta!  Cheese!

Well, the suitcase wouldn't have been able to make it onto the plane if I'd done that, so we didn't bring a whole lot back with us.  We mostly bought what we could consume while we were there, and that was enough to keep us perfectly happy.

But I just couldn't resist that big, salty hunk of Parmigiano-Reggiano...no worries that I had to lug it around for a couple of days and pack it up nicely in my suitcase!  I just this moment finished chopping it into smaller chunks to give to friends.  Some people show their love with sweets and some of us show it with cheese.  Yay for cheese!

More coming soon!  But for now, a few photos and a quick moment to give thanks for the opportunity to enjoy such a wonderful experience, with such a wonderful human being by my side.  I am so, so thankful!

One of the greatest meals of the trip, or maybe my whole life, was inside these humble walls in Florence.   It was here I had my first taste of ribollita, with which I am now obsessed.  More about that later!

Spaghetti with freshly caught anchovies from the sea in Cinque Terre, at Trattoria Lanterna.  OH. MY. GOD. Another food highlight.

Produce market in Lido.  Such beauty!

        Masks in Venice.

The pizza of my dreams, also in Lido.