Celebrating in Castelrotto

Author: , June 5th, 2013

Our dear friend, Bella (Dolly Goolsby) is on the go again, this time in Italy. She has graciously allowed us to republish her travel blogs. Enjoy!

CastelrottoToday was a very interesting day. Today the town was celebrating Corpus Christi, which is held every year, supposedly 50 days after Easter. I learned from the owner of our hotel that Corpus Christi is always on a Thursday. In Germany and Austria the celebration is held on that day, but in Italy it is celebrated on the Sunday following.

Therefore, the huge parade after a Holy Mass at the church. I was fortunate to have a ring side standing place, so I got quite a lot of good pictures, including one video that runs for 9 minutes, with the music from the bands included. I won’t try to send that to you, but if you want to see it after I get home, it is on this little iPad.

The parade started at the church, wound its way through the town, stopping a few blocks away from our hotel, where we watched it from our balcony. It was so fun seeing the people in the traditional costumes, and the little children in their dirndls and short pants.

Later, after lunch, we took a chair lift up the mountain to the little area of Marinzen, where there is a playground for children, as well as goats, cows, a Mommy horse with her colt, and goats. There are also trails, of course, so some of our group hiked back to Castelrotto, which was about an hour’s hike downhill. But I decided to ride the chair lift back down, and the view was so pretty.

It is cold here, and more rain threatening over the mountains, but so far no rain today. I had sent my earmuffs, gloves and scarf home with Patrick and Kiri, thinking I would not need them anymore. As I watched the hotel receptionist put more wood into the fireplace yesterday, I asked her if she thought she would be doing that on June 1.

She told me that the weather here has been very unusual this year….the same thing we have heard all along our travel route. But tomorrow is supposed to be warmer, so perhaps we will get up to Compatsch, the little town at the start of the Alpe di Suisi meadow and hiking trails. I hope we get to see the wildflowers, as I remember how wonderful it was to see green meadows with the beautiful wildflowers all over.

So, even with cooler weather than we expected, the atmosphere here just lends itself to relaxing, enjoying the hiking through beautiful landscapes, and I am sure my blood pressure has dropped at least 20 mm/hg since arriving here. I could easily stay here a month and find something new each day. The people are very friendly, some do speak a bit of Italian or English. Our hotel is very nice. If I don’t return to the U.S. when I am supposed to, look for me here.

Hopefully I will be able to send more pictures tomorrow.

Auf Wiedersehen for now.

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Gay Friendly Trentino-Alto Adige Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Postcards From an Italian Adventure: The Dolomites in September

Author: , September 15th, 2010

Gay Friendly Italy Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Our dear friend, Bella (Dolly Goolsby) is on an extended adventure in Italy. She has graciously agreed to let us republish her travel logs. Enjoy!

Dolomites, Italy

Tuesday, September 14th

Dolomites, ItalyIf I had the capability to send you 1000 pictures or 10,000 words, I would still not be able to describe the beauty of the Dolomites. Everywhere I go, as I am photographing my travels I have the opportunity to see lovely landscapes, and I try my best to describe these, but this area, the Seiser Alm, or Alpe di Suisi, is indescribably beautiful. I can stand here and try to think of enough words to describe what I am seeing, but words are inadequate. It has to be seen to realize the beauty.

These mountains rise above the meadows, providing the most dramatic landscape imaginable, from the peaceful meadows, the cows grazing, the meadow flowers, so delicate under our feet, that we are going out of our way to avoid stepping on them, to the soaring towers of the stark, bare, dolomite mountains, with small patches of snow still hiding in the crevices.

Dolomites, ItalyOn the shoulders of some of the bare peaks are narrow ridges of green trees, looking like epilauts on the uniform of soldiers. The weather had been cold and rainy in this area the day before our first hike, and there was a dusting of new snow on some of the mountains; it seemed as if a giant baker had sprinkled powdered sugar over the peaks. Fortunately for us, the weather was sunny, with just a touch of autumn in the breeze that was blowing, making great hiking conditions.

There are so many hiking trails here, that one could spend an entire summer, or a Iifetime, trying to hike all of them. The magnificent mountain plateaus, so far above us that we know we can never hike that high, but, oh my, do we want to do that. To be able to hike those upper trails and spend the night in a rifugio would be so awesome! I am just sorry that I waited until this stage of my life to go hiking up here.

Dolomites, Italy - CattleOn our first day of hiking, we took a relatively easy trail; nevertheless, we had the opportunity to see the cows up front and personal, we were able to visit a few of the “hutte” , where we were able to get food and drink, visit with the locals, and get ourselves refreshed for further hiking.

I do highly recommend this area for anyone who is planning to visit Northern Italy. Be advised, that the primary language spoken here is German, although many people also know English. Not very many speak any Italian. It is difficult to remember this is Italy, because the people here definitely are Austrian.

Dolomites, ItalyThe region is called Sud Tirol, which is in effect, South Austria, rather than Northern Italy. Culture shock, no, as these people became Italian due to political changing of territorial boundaries between World War I and World War II. It is a great culture, with the Tirolean food; schnitzel, bratwurst, great beer, very good white wine, apple strudel, dumplings. On festival days, people dress in the finest Austrian jackets, hats, dirndls for the women. Their music is Tirolean, with alpenhorns and yodeling. No Italian operas up here.

While we are hiking, there are bicyclists going past us. This is a magnificent area for mountain biking, and some of these people are as crazy as the biciclitti personi that I know in USA…(no names, but you know who I am referring to.)

Bella and Franco in the DolomitesSo, whether you want to hike or bike, take photos, or just enjoy the beauty, come to the Dolomites and see it for yourself!

In the meantime, I will continue to absorb all the beauty of this area that my mind can hold, and I hope, that somehow, I can relay what I am seeing to you. I want everyone to see the wonders that I am seeing, and I can only hope that I have the means to convey this by my writing.

Mountain Goats in the DolomitesWe are staying in the town of Castelrotto, just a few kilometers from the Seiser Alm. After our hiking one day, we were just exploring this little town, and came across a path that wanders along a ridge at the west end of town.

From this ridge we were able to look down, across some green meadows, to another little village, that looked like a picture postcard. Again, one beautiful view after another.

After a one night stay in Bolzano, we will be heading back to Florence. So I will finish this note now, so that you have the opportunity to savor the sights I have described, and get just a glimpse of the Dolomiti from my pictures.

Ciao for now…

Dolly

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