Virtual Day Two: Ah, back home in Italy
Updated: May 20
After a layover in Munich we flew into Florence and anxiously awaited our "household essential" bag as it contained what we thought we needed over the next six weeks to establish "home" wherever we were staying: Bluetooth speakers (instead of Alexa!), Mexican Train dominoes, electrical adapters for multiple bedrooms, and other "essentials". Fortunately, it gracefully slid down the ramp onto the conveyor!
After sanitizing our luggage and rental car we were able to remove our masks for the first time in 16 hours - blessed relief! Who knew masks could be so suffocating? The traffic getting out of Florence was dramatically less than in past trips which made finding the A1/E35 a snap.
As we headed south to Gracciano we decided to stop in Sinalunga, one of the many hillside medieval villages in Tuscany, for groceries and lunch at Forcillo Ristorante Locanda & Camere (an authentic Tuscan osteria). Stefano instantly embraced his new Texas friends and worked to ensure our first meal in Tuscany was memorable, serving fresh pici pasta (a thick round pasta native to the Val d'Orcia and Val di Chiana areas of Tuscany) with our choice of 3 varieties of homemade sauces. Oh my! I had forgotten how velvety light pasta can be and the cinghiale (wild boar) sauce was deep and flavorful.
After lunch and our shopping excursion (which was not without a few laughs as we navigated 100% Italian labels) we were delighted to arrive at Villa Maramai, our home for a month, to find it as we had hoped - charming in every way! Ersilia met us upon arrival to walk us through the operations of the villa and Anna had prepared an antipasta for our first night in the vineyards of Tenuta di Gracciano della Seta. Our lite dinner was paired with a Vino Nobile di Montepulciano from the Gracciano cellars. Ah, back home in Italy - la dolce vita!