Newport, County Mayo–the WRONG Newport

I left Limerick with my heart in my throat—it had been an easy drive from Shannon Airport to my hotel in Limerick, about 15 miles along a “motorway” (freeway), and my hotel was on the near side of town, easy to spot—third exit from the third roundabout. (God bless Google maps!) So far, no . . . → Read More: Newport, County Mayo–the WRONG Newport

The “Titanic” blog—not “enormous,” just a disaster (for me)

I’m back from Ireland, back in my home in Spello, and I’ve been trying to figure out how to tell this story, write this blog. The day after I met my Irish cousins in Limerick, I was picked up by Martin (one of my cousins) for a day of visits to family heritage sites near . . . → Read More: The “Titanic” blog—not “enormous,” just a disaster (for me)

Family Ties in “The Old Country,” Ireland

April 30, 2017

This current trip began on April 20, when I arrived to open my home in Spello and clean for guests arriving from Sacramento and staying for 2 weeks, while I had to go elsewhere and leave my home to them. After considering many options, including visiting Sardinia’s beaches, going back to . . . → Read More: Family Ties in “The Old Country,” Ireland

“What happened to your blogs? Where did they go?”

I came back to Spello for this current visit with an agenda: getting blogs posted as soon as I could, and starting right away with a “bridge blog” to explain why so many months have gone by without any new posts–in fact, more than a year. It’s been an extraordinary time for me, with many challenges . . . → Read More: “What happened to your blogs? Where did they go?”

An ambitious update to Spello’s streets and utility services

(November 3, 2015) It’s been about eighteen months since the project began to dig up the main streets of Spello, and replace the outdated water, gas, power, sewer and other underground piping—long overdue, especially for those who have experienced sewer “issues” in their homes. Because there is one principal route up through Spello, just . . . → Read More: An ambitious update to Spello’s streets and utility services

A quick trip with Pat Hanna to Deruta

(November 2, 2015)  On our travels to find different wineries and wines, and get out into Umbria, Pat and I decided to make a short stop in nearby Deruta, one of the most famous names in the world for high-quality majolica ceramics. The town is filled with small shops, many featuring an artist painting . . . → Read More: A quick trip with Pat Hanna to Deruta

New 2015 harvest olive oil directly from the Spello frantoio

(November 1, 2015) One of the reasons that I plan to stay in Spello until after the first week in November is that I don’t want to miss the opportunity to go home with the new season’s olive oil. With a disaster year in 2014 due to the invasion of worms into the olives . . . → Read More: New 2015 harvest olive oil directly from the Spello frantoio

“Flying” to the Ciampino airport

(November 1, 2015)  I had been out with other friends, and was just being delivered back to Piazza Vallegloria (only a few steps from my door) when Paola and Leonardo asked if I’d like to go with them to take daughter Arianna to the airport at Ciampino. It is the secondary airport in Rome, . . . → Read More: “Flying” to the Ciampino airport

A trip to the produce shop in Bevagna

(October 29, 2015) Every week, I catch a ride with Paola and Leonardo to a small produce shop outside Bevagna, where produce of all kinds costs only €1 per kilo—a very good price, and the fruit and vegetables are sold directly from the producer. Apples and peaches are in huge bins on pallets, and we . . . → Read More: A trip to the produce shop in Bevagna

Anne Boulamakis–and her miraculous new heart

(October 28, 2015)  I posted a blog on September 11, 2013, telling the story of my friend Anne Boulamakis, in Florence, and her recently implanted heart pump. It was called an LVAD–Left Ventricular Assist Device–and was powered by a battery pack and computer that she had to carry around in a fanny pack all . . . → Read More: Anne Boulamakis–and her miraculous new heart