Author Archives: Myra

Surprise trip to New York!

My birthday, as readers and friends know, was something of a disaster, but then all was not lost when Bill spotted a “shopping trip” to New York for 4 days flying from Newcastle. It was a whirlwind visit, not helped … Continue reading

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Market enables bills to be paid for another year!

After the previous weather disasters when I couldn’t have my Cose Inglesi stall either because it was pouring down (May) or too hot(July), finally I managed to clear the garage of most of my boxes with a wonderful day at … Continue reading

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October Birthday Celebrations

October is almost a whole month of celebrating my birthday, but it got off to a very bad start when our train to King’s Cross was delayed by 3/4 hour, with a knock-on effect. To make matters worse, the Gatwick … Continue reading

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Vendemmia: harvesting the grapes

There’s a row of wheelbarrows and baskets waiting when we arrive at 8am, together with boxes of disposable gloves and secateurs. We march out past the Friularo grapes, which will be picked later, to the yellow moscato grapes hanging in … Continue reading

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Civic Vandalism

The way they run things in Italy is often infuriating. As I write I can hear chainsaws at work cutting down the beautiful umbrella pines on one of the main streets in Battaglia. Apparently some inhabitants have complained through social … Continue reading

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Another discovery in the hills

I thought, having lived in this part of Italy on and off for 8 years that I knew all the local interesting places, but this afternoon I discovered another. The Santuario at Monteortone, only about five miles away, is half … Continue reading

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The Saving of a Crumbling Castle

On the fringes of my Italian village is the enormous Catajo castle which has almost sleeping beauty status, having been neglected for 100 years. It went up for auction recently but there were no takers, presumably because however cheap it … Continue reading

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Loreto and the Flying Holy House

The strange – ridiculous – story of Loreto intrigued me so much that I had to go to see it. The home of the Virgin Mary miraculously found its way to Loreto carried by angels, and landed in an olive … Continue reading

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A Midsummer’s Night in Padua

A Shakespeare festival in Padua? Someone had the brilliant idea of imitating Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park and allowing anyone who wished to recite Shakespeare for 400 seconds to mark the 400th anniversary of his death. I asked naively whether … Continue reading

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Quintessential England

This weekend, staying with friends in a tiny village in Swaledale, Yorkshire, we drove to Easby, a hidden corner near Richmond where there is a large ruined abbey ( courtesy of course of Henry VIII) and the little church of … Continue reading

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