I, like everyone else I know have been lying low, waiting and hoping for a more sane and normal life to return. Well, sanity might be too much to ask. But it looks like at least most of the U.S. is soon going to loosen up some and travel may start again as soon as June. I am finally confident enough in the loosening of quarantines and shut downs that I have booked my return trip to Italy. It is truly astonishing that it has been so long since we were in Italy. After living there for a few years, and traveling twice a year for so many years, it has left me not only sad, but a little confused.
I am feeling so fortunate that all my friends and associates in Italy have remained healthy. It has been so impressive to me that so many Italians followed all the restrictions that were put on them.
Most of the regions are now at least partially open. As of this date six regions remain in the “orange” zone,, which limits travel between regions and more restrictive business hours, etc. (Puglia, Basilicata, Sicily and Calabria and Sardinia will remain in the orange zone another week). Otherwise, travel for anyone who can prove vaccination or nagative covid testing is open. There is still a 10 pm curfew in most places, including Rome. While there are still restrictions, like social distancing and masks, museums are opening, theaters and movie houses are opening. Italy is determined to ready for tourists by the end of June. I am takingno chances and will wait for summer tourists to move on.
I am determined not to miss another olive harvest. I will be traveling the end of October to be in time for the harvests. I have promised a visit to Puglia to visit the ‘Just Puglia Factory’ a relatively new endeavor with artisinal local products from the Lecce Apulia area. I am excited to visit – to experience the Just Puglia Olive Oil collection including the infused organic extra virgin olive oils. They will have cooking classes, locally grown produce and local ceramic artists from Grottaglie with their traditional gray salt glazed ceramics. It sounds like a fantastic project. Apulia is a very beautiful area near the heel of the boot. If you have the chance to visit be sure to visit Bari, Lecce and especially the Trulli houses of Alberobello. There is so much great food in this region too. The area is considered the breadbasket of Italy because of the durum wheat grown there. The best taralli come from Puglia.
I will be sending out a newsletter with updates so if you are not already on my mailing list, please send me an email and I’ll happily add you to the list. And, yes, I will bring back fresh harvested olive oil and spices/herbs from Campo dei Fiori. And, that really special honey from Sardinia that Stefano has.
Mauro, Marco and Fabrizio await me.
I am hopeful that by the fall life here as well as throughout the rest of the world will have taken on a more normal look and we can all relax for awhile.
Thanks for your patience with me. I think I can get myself back to organization, communication and photos soon.