When autumn approaches, ‘one off’ stalls, selling mushrooms that people have collected, join the regular stalls in the market. Pride of place goes to the Cardoncello mushroom, which grows in the ‘Murgia’ area – the stony elevated plateau that occupies more or less the centre of Puglia. Continue reading
No matter that it has been summer here, by any normal standards, for weeks. Soon it will be SUMMER, and a whole succession of happenings take place: feast days, fairs, outdoors concerts and wonderful opportunities for people watching, as eveyone gets dressed up to the nines and parades around all evening!
We have listed public events below but, particularly around Ferragosto, there will be happenings everywhere and we will keep this list updated as there is a tendency here to publish things at the last moment. Continue reading
This is the first newsletter since the April one – apologies to all subscribers but we have been very busy organising all of our planned activities for the summer, and also I have been helping some people to find and buy a house, get quotes for the necessary work and so on. In both cases I have definitely come up against the less pleasurable aspects of life in the South of Italy, namely the need to do constant ‘salti mortali’ (death leaps) to overcome layer upon layer of bureaucracy, red tape, and a, shall we say, flexible, attitude to time keeping or the need to make any decisions whatsoever within a set time frame!
No matter, nothing that a quick trip to the beach every so often can’t resolve and some of the lovely visitors whose holidays we have organised in this period have provided definite moments of light relief! Continue reading
One of the things I love about this area of Puglia is that each little town has it’s own character, it’s own dishes and even almost it’s own climate..”Locorotondo (literally round place,as the roads of the centro storico are laid out almost in concentric circles) is no exception.
After an early flourish Spring seemed to get discouraged and go away again, and I began to think that the Puglian motto ‘domani si pensa’ – tomorrow we will think about it – even applied to the weather.
But today is glorious; the sky is blue, the sea a sparkling turquoise and every scrap of spare land, even in town, is carpeted with wild flowers. Continue reading
Puglia has always been a favoured destination for Italian holiday makers, but is now increasingly popular with the discerning international visitor who comes, not just for the incomparable sea and the best beaches on the Italian mainland, but also for the food, the wine and to experience the unique history, culture and way of life, largely unspoiled by tourism. The areas of the Salento and Gargano may be better known, but the area between Bari and Brindisi has as much, or more, to offer as well as being closer to the airports. Continue reading
Yesterday I read an article in the Daily Mail about Borgo Egnazia hotel and, loosely, Puglia. It made my blood boil to the point that I immediately added an, admittedly waspish, comment. The comment wasn’t posted, nor were my subsequent more moderate attempts but I still feel the need to redress the balance, so I am doing it here. My problems with the article? Continue reading
I have always loved Christmas and in Puglia it is particularly magical…It starts in earnest on the ‘immacolata’ – the 8th of December. The main Christmas lights go up , people have a day off work and decorate their trees, if they haven’t already, and it becomes increasingly hard to get any sense out of anyone on the work front – the holidays have definitely begun, in spirit anyway.
As soon as it gets dark the streets are lit with twinkling lights – no garish multi-coloured neon here, but usually golden, silver or blue, and simple forms such as stars. Lit like this the church domes, medieval arches and wrought iron balconies look particularly romantic and the streets are crowded with people . They are nominally doing Christmas shopping but often, one gets the impression, they are just wandering about, to see and be seen, calling out greetings to friends and neighbours and stopping occasionally, maybe for a hot chocolate with whipped cream, at a bar. Continue reading
To enter the ‘old town’ of Polignano you pass through a deep stone arch, set in the remaining part of the original fortified town wall and, emerging the other side, you do feel like you have entered another world. The … Continue reading
Monopoli has it all; a medieval centre with narrow cobblestoned streets and whitewashed houses, a Baroque cathedral, a Venetian style palazzo overlooking blue painted fishing boats, a castle and the remains of the sixteenth century town walls, complete with cannons. … Continue reading