06/14/2016

Travel – Renting an Italian Villa

I see why Italians drive compact cars as I am being instructed not to hit a wall on one end but have a gate an inch to the other side as we exit the grounds of our hotel. We drive through windy roads you share with rogue cyclists. The directions to our villa include “between the pink and yellow house and then an iron crucifix.” As the majority of the homes are either pink or yellow the iron crucifix cuts about 10 minutes off of our search.

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What we will call home for a week sits atop the hill, a Tuscan version of Tara, the yellow home plotted within grounds that contain palm, jasmine, fig, pear and olive trees. Though these are the only ones I can identify so sorry if I left anyone out. As the owners are from the U.S. you see American touches from the clipped lawns and infinity pool while most Italians prefer their land a bit rugged, just like their interiors. This is an old country where preservation reigns; even a butter dish is meant to be saved and passed down.

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Luc going full force, energized by that Tuscan air.

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The interiors are true to the region with a mix of Italian antiques, dark wooden sturdy pieces that may have come with the original home. The walls are painted in Tuscan colors, such as burnt sienna and yellow. Two of the bedrooms with single beds, claimed by Luc and his cousin, are blue and green. My niece and suitemate share the backside of the house that have the same slatted ceiling striped with wooden beams. Our armoires have keys, in fact keys are prevalent here, the old skeletal kind used centuries ago that are also on the doors so it’s wise to keep them intact for the possibility of being locked out.

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Luc’s “green” room.

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My bathroom.

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Jet lag and cousins who live on separate coasts keep us up way too late but the main morning agenda is what to have for breakfast. We eat a lot here. Even the bread and coffee taste better.

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Main gathering place for our meals.

You fall into an abyss of slumber only to be awoken by a high energy rooster. It feels a bit early. My phone confirms that it is 4:30 in the morning. Even the roosters want to start the day early. The week continues through the direction of the children. They pick wildflowers and I have to be careful not to knock over their scented potions stored in the fridge. There is the building of forts. Understanding the game of Bocce ball. Learning the Tuscan way.

Piscine

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