I’ve mentioned in earlier posts that a few times a year, I head to the hills of northern Italy.
The formal line is that I go over, roll my sleeves up, and work hard bringing my family’s rustic shack up to scratch. The reality is that’s a feeble cover story for gorging on pizza and guzzling gallons of wine.
My family’s from Emilia Romagna. It’s not as well known or popular with tourists as other areas like Tuscany, which is just to the south. But it’s no less awesome.
My wife and I have just spent a week there. Here’s three reasons why we love this part of Italy so much:
1. The food
If you’re Vegan, this is not the place for you. But if you love pizza, pasta, cured meats, cheeses and fizzy red wine (Spumante), then this area is top of the pops.
Tip: when you get home, leave it at least a week before weighing yourself.
2. The views
I took the photo below during an early morning run, at about 5.30am. It’s a familiar view, but in this light the rolling hills and valleys blew me away.
Why was I up so early? All night, I’d been kept awake by crickets humming, birds singing, dogs barking, church bells ringing, and farmers’ crop scarers blasting (to keep the birds from tasty crops). I’d have slept better on the hard shoulder of the M4.
Who cares. With views like this, a bit less sleep is a price worth paying.
3. Village life
The pace of life here is first gear. Possibly even reverse. Nobody’s in a rush to do anything.
Spending time here gets you back to basics: food, shelter, warmth and quality time with family/friends. Why should life be any more complicated than that?
We’re heading back in August. Can’t wait.