Sunday, October 7th

The solitude of Boggioli was what we craved today after all the travelling we have done over the last 3 weeks. It was a cloudy, cooler day today: perfect for relaxing, reading, and reflecting.

Earlier this afternoon I went for a stroll out behind The Barn through the olive grove, pausing frequently to listen to the wind rustling the leaves of the olive branches or to drink in the views out over the valley.

At one point I briefly caught the aroma of fresh cut wood. Several stacks of wood had been cut to dry for winter heating. Oddly it evoked memories of another farm from many years ago and thousands of kilometers away. As a boy one of my favorite times was the annual fall corn roast at my mother’s cousin’s farm near Seba Beach. The shed stacked full with wood to fuel the cookstove for the winter had the same wonderful smell.

Looking out across the valley to the blue-tinged hills I thought back over the past 3 and a half weeks. We have been to so many places but have seen so little of Tuscany. At about 3.5% the size of Alberta, the size of Tuscany would be roughly equivalent to a strip 60 km wide from Edmonton to Red Deer. There is so much to see and experience and we have only scratched the surface. Around every bend of every road (and there are an infinite number of bends) there is another Castillo, another vineyard, another valley, another village on top of another hill.

My biggest regret in writing this blog is that I do not possess the skill to use words as a brush to paint the beauty of this country. Nor do I possess the artistic eye to truly capture with my lens the awe that the ever-changing landscape evokes. But I will take with me some incredible memories of this truly remarkable region of Italy. And I take comfort in knowing that one day we will return.

The olives lining the branches are starting to ripen. While the grape harvest is nearing completion, the olive harvest is several weeks away, reminding me yet again how much more we have to see in Tuscany.

We still have two more full days before we head to Florence to start our trip home. We have invited our hosts, Keith and Helen Richmond, to share Thanksgiving Dinner with us tomorrow night. It will be a Canadian Thanksgiving Dinner Tuscan Style … we just don’t really know for sure what that is going to be. But I do know that we do have a bottle of a delicious 2007 Brunello Riserva to go with it.

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