Postcards From an Italian Adventure – Weekend at the Seacoast

Author: , July 31st, 2010

Gay Friendly Tuscany 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!

Viareggio, Italy

Tuesday, July 13th

Friday night, after an absolutely miserable day for me… (remember the sciopero?) The heat was intense. and no air moving at all. I had done some sightseeing in the afternoon, but it was too hot to do too much. I ended up spending an hour in a bookstore, and another hour in an air conditioned cafe, having a cool drink and reading my new book.

After I got back to the apartment, Amanda came down; she and I went out to dinner, but no energy to do more that that. Sometime later, around 10:00 p.m., I emailed Massimo and Magda, and told them how miserable the heat was here in Florence.

Well, to make a long story short, the next morning they called me, and invited me to come to Viareggio. It didn’t take me long to pack; I caught a train and was at the sea coast by 1:30 p.m.

OrsonWhat a great weekend I had. The Carli’s gave me a bedroom that had belonged to one of the sons, who have since left home. The only condition was, that I had to leave the door open to the balcony, as well as to the hallway to the house, as Orson considered that room his, and would be willing to share it with me, if I met his conditions!! Which, of course, I was happy to do. Orson is the Carli’s big chow, and a wonderful roommate. He never bothered me, just wandered in and out all night, never making a sound. His heavy fur must have been keeping him as warm as I felt in Florence. I slept like a lamb, with the door to the balcony open, hearing occasional noise from the sea, which is 2 blocks away.

Almost as soon as I arrived, we had lunch, then Magda loaned me a bathing suit, and off I went to the beach, while they went to the grocery store. Niccolo, their oldest son, and his wife, were at the beach, so I visited with them for awhile, then I went swimming in the sea. The water was warm, and not deep, so I just enjoyed myself.

Going to the beach in Italy is not the same as going to the beach in the US. The Carli’s have a prime spot right near the surf. This beach spot is rented and is similar to having a slip at the marina for a boat… if one is fortunate enough to have a prime spot, you never give it up… keep it in the family forever!!

That evening, the Carli’s had guests for dinner… 2 very delightful people. The man is called Lele, I believe (I am not sure of the spelling). He is truly a Renaissance man… poet, song writer, actor, flower arranger… I am sure this is just a short list.

He was very funny, too. He did speak English, and tried to include me in the conversations (a lost cause, after a while). Leah, the other special guest, is a restaurant owner, and cook par excellence. Of course, I had to like her!! Both of Carli sons were there, Niccolo with his wife, Elena, and Jacopo, who now lives in Florence.

Massimo cooked up a wonderful sea food stew from one of Leah’s recipes, so of course, I had to have my nose in the kitchen… the stew was similar to Cioppino, but naturally, used all local seafood: white fish, shrimp, calamari, clams, mixed with tomato and herbs.

It was served in bowls over slices of toasted bread… YUMMMMMMM!! There was also Ratatouille, a frittata, many glasses of wine, Prosecco, white wine… and the conversations were just flitting around me like butterflies.

The next morning, Sunday, Massimo and I went to visit his mother. I had met her before, a couple of times. She lives in an apartment adjacent to Massimo and Magda. She has a lady who stays with her, to cook for her, and help her get around. She is pretty healthy, but will celebrate her 105th birthday next month. We had a nice visit. I was so glad I got to see her.

In the afternoon, we all went to the beach again, then later, Massimo, Magda and I went to a birthday party for Leah’s granddaughter, Anna, who had her 5th birthday. After the birthday party, back at the Carli’s apartment, we took the leftovers from the previous night’s dinner, and had dinner al fresco on the roof top terrace. Then, like all weekends, it had to come to an end, and now I am back in Florence… humidity, heat and all.

Last night I went to Fiesole for a jazz concert in the old Roman theater. That was very good, fun, and it was a bit cooler up there.

Today, the only exciting thing that happened was that I saw a pedestrian get hit by a motor scooter. It was the pedestrian’s fault for trying to run against traffic on Via Cavour, a quite busy street. I don’t think he was hurt too badly, but he was complaining of pain in his legs, so the ambulance came and took him away. The scooter driver took a spill, as well, but he had his helmet on, and did not appear to be injured. I knew that the odds of this happening where I would see it, were very high. I am just glad it wasn’t me that was in the incident.

So, for now I will say, buono notte, and try to get some sleep. The air conditioner is working, thank goodness, so perhaps I will sleep through the night tonight.

This adventure is really very fun. In spite of the heat, Florence is still a fabulous city. I haven’t even touched on all there is to do here.

I love and miss all of you, but this is truly the adventure of a lifetime, with more excitement and new things to come.

Ciao for now.


Want to Follow Bella’s Adventure Directly? Check Out Dolly Travels

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