Friday, 27 September 2013

Ciao Abruzzo! - San Gottardo, the return!

Buona sera!  What do you think of my new look blog?  It's fab isn't it!  Designed by the lovely Amanda at The Suitcase Designs (www.thesuitcasedesigns.com). Captures my blog and I perfectly!

Back on topic, to our Summer holiday.  We headed to Serramonacesca (our neighbouring village) for a wander and a coffee.  It was our last day and we wanted to go somewhere nearby as we had to pack and tidy the house.

We always drive through Serra, but never really stop there.  It is a pretty little village, a bit prettier than ours I would say because it has retained it's historical centre (having avoided the landslide that devastated our village), although it has fewer amenities.
 




We found a cafe on the corner and settled at a table to watch the world go by for a hour or so.

You see and hear all kinds of things in an Italian village when you take the time to stop.  With the scent of coffee and the perfume of flowers in the air, as Ralph slept in his pushchair and Alfie played with his cards, Will and I laughed as two cars passed, driving the opposite way to one another, then braked, reversed and met in the middle of the road...two friends having a chat.  A couple of young men were earnestly discussing the merits of their Mamma's ragu.  A nonna scolded her grandchildren for playing too close to the road.  An old couple squished in an ape with their large dog parking outside the grocers.  A group of friends discussing the weather....  After watching this little tableau of Abruzzen life, we instantly felt more relaxed and less stressed about our journey the next day, although it made us want to stay.

That afternoon, we visited our village's shops and cafe to sadly say goodbye to our friends.  Fino alla prossima volta! (Until next time!)

At around one o'clock the next morning, we carefully put our little boys in the car so they could stay sleeping, said a quiet 'Arrivederci' to our little casa and set off on our way.

Around seven hours later, after a long stop where Will and 
I slept in the car, we reached the San Gottard....queue?!  Surely not again!  Yet again, the traffic was horrendous.  All backed up because of people using the tunnel. It must drive the Swiss mad, but from the sounds of it their beautiful country is invaded by August holidaymakers on a yearly basis.  I can understand lorries and coaches using the tunnel (and you will see why they should on my pics), but other than that, most of those people could have been well on their way on the pass.  I remember reading on a film website the following quote from Orson Welles;

"In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michaelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance.  In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace and what did they produce?  The cuckoo clock."

A little unfair, they also make Toblerone and the most divine potato rosti. ; )



 


Further on, this same coach meets a lorry coming the other way....that was interesting

Anyway, on the upside, dear readers, I am returning to Abruzzo next weekend with my best friend, Laura.  Laura and her husband Nick have been through all our ups and downs throughout the whole process of us searching for a house in Como, finding Abruzzo, finding a plot/house, having a house built in time for our wedding, getting married in Abruzzo, babies etc, but Laura hasn't been to Abruzzo since 2009 and I can't wait to show her all the new places we've discovered and find new ones too.  I am very excited about it and look forward to telling you all about it when I return.  Nick and Will are therefore on daddy day care with our children!  Buona fortuna ragazzi! (good luck boys!)

31 comments:

Andrea said...

So incredibly beautiful!

LuluG said...

Hi Andrea, thank you for reading!

Tina @ Girl-Meets-Globe said...

Beautiful new design!! I love sitting in cafes in small towns and watching the locals do things like have a chat in their car in the middle of the road! :)
You must be so excited to be going back next weekend! And a girl's getaway at that! Sounds like fun!

Raine N Skye said...

Love the new look!
What scenic views - I love the tunnel.
And that corner looks much too sharp for two cars to pass at once.
Have fun this weekend with Laura. :D

LuluG said...

Hi Tina, thanks. : ) Yes, I am really excited for next weekend!

LuluG said...

Thank you for reading Raine N Skye. It is so scenic, amazing, we love it and yes, in places it's tight enough for cars let alone bigger vehicles! Thanks, I'm sure I'll have fun!

Julia Toussaint said...

LOVE your new look! I had to take a double check to make sure I was in the right blog, lol.

I love that second pic with the different colored buildings. And the hilltops look gorgeous!

LuluG said...

: ) Hi Julia, thanks! It does look different doesn't it. I had to double-check it was mine! Very happy with it!

Barbara A Mizzoni Young said...

What lovely photos. I envy you this wonderful life.
Visiting from I love my post blog hop. Following via Bloglovin'
Barbara @ www.allmylivesnow.com

Bex said...

Wow, love the new look - your blog is beautiful!

Anyway, love this post - such lovely photos and I look forward to reading even more :)

Futures; a Beauty & lifestyle blog

LuluG said...

Ciao Barbara, thank you for reading and your lovely comments.

LuluG said...

Hi Bex, thank you. I do have to keep checking it's my blog! Thanks for coming over and reading. x

Lanaya | Raising Reagan said...

Louisa the blog design is beautiful. As are the pictures.

Thank you for linking to Raising Imperfection.
Please come back Friday to see if you were featured. :)

¤´¨)
¸.•*´
(¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo
Raising-Reagan.com

LuluG said...

Hi Lanaya, thank you, glad you like it!

mail4rosey said...

Credit def. should be given for Toblerone. ;)

This is a great post and I love the pictures.

The pic with the hat is my fave. That's a very cute child!! :)

Thank you for linking to Super Sunday Sync!

LuluG said...

Thanks Rosey! My eldest, Alfie, is happy to pose for Mummy's pics thankfully! : )

Heidi Fuqua said...

Such beautiful places to visit. And the people in the villages always make the visit more interest don't they? Hope you have a wonderful day!

Heidi’s Wanderings

mltucker said...

Lovely new design. What a great adventure for your children (and you). Have a wonderful time!

LuluG said...

Hi Heidi, thanks for reading. Abruzzen people are wonderful and it's always nice to people-watch. : )

LuluG said...

Ciao Mary! Glad you like the design. Yes, our boys are very lucky to have these experiences. Thank you, I'm sure I'll have a good time!

Avoir la Peche said...

Love your new look - enjoying getting to know your lovely blog too :)
I love that quote about Italy & Switzerland - and couldn't agree more about Toblerone & potato rostis!
Sarah x

http://avoir-la-peche.blogspot.co.uk/

wilson tom said...

Hi I am a new follower to your lovely blog via G+, Blogvin & twitter, Found you through Monday Mingling Blog Hop. You have really an amazing blog, the pictures are amazingly beautiful. Hope you had enjoyed the holiday very much

my blog: wilsontom.blogspot.com

LuluG said...

Hi, thank you for following Wilson Tom and your lovely comments. It's always nice to hear that people enjoy my photos. : )

Lindsey Marie said...

The cars are so tiny. The first picture with your son looks like it was made for him!

abroadsworld.blogspot.com

LuluG said...

Hi Lindsey Marie, I know, they're dinky! This is what an Italian ape (bee) vehicle is like:
http://www.piaggioape.co.uk/ape_range.html

You can barely fit one person in, but we have seen two or three in them! : )

Deb@CookingOnTheFrontBurner said...

Your trip sounds lovely and your pictures are awesome!

Brittney @ True Vintage Love said...

Loving your new blog design & those apartments or whatever they are look SO adorable!

♥ Brittney @ True Vintage Love
www.truevintagelove.com

LuluG said...

Hi Deb, thanks! Shame it was raining, but the pass still looks amazing. : )

LuluG said...

Hi Brittney, thanks for reading and I'm glad you like the blog. They are cute aren't they! I love the colours. : )

BavarianSojourn said...

Hi Louisa, lovely to "meet you"! Brilliant pics, apart from the windy road one, which is still brilliant, but reminds me of a horrible experience on the spuglia pass last year! :D

LuluG said...

Hi, Thank you for reading. I love Germany so your blog is a joy for me to read. There are some pretty scary passes aren't there. Have you ever been on the Furkapass - I was nervous to say the least!