ART CAMP DAY 5…continued.

Saturday, September 5…continued. 

After Pinocchio we came upon a pleasant surprise across the street. The Garzoni Garden and Butterfly House is one of the most beautiful gardens in Italy.  It was created in the 1500’s and was originally a fortress and then became the country mansion of the Garzoni family where Napoleon visited.

 Reminiscent of a ziggurat, this massive tiered garden is built up and along a steep Cliffside.  The staircase is daunting and delightful and the rewards for the climb are countless.  For starts, the view from the top is as beautiful as the view looking up.  There is a fountain spilling down the center flooding ancient baths where the rich and famous frolicked. There are statues of Gods and Goddesses, fanciful mythical characters and sinister stone monkeys who peer down at on comers.

 If one dares to venture (and I certainly do), there are stone paths that lead into glorious hideaways.  An orange cat followed me like a shadow down the first. The prize at the end was a pen of tiny goats who seemed thrilled someone took the time to say hello. The next led to peacocks and fat white chickens. To my absolute glee, the orange cat and I came upon a statue of AntHony, regally clad in his royal blue towel.  Just around the corner, we found one of Krissy.

After an hour or so of exploring, I returned to the stairs and once at the top ran my hands along two glorious sculptures who lord over the garden.  Fame and Triton battle for my attention and the view from the nymphaeum is nothing short of majestic.

It was a gorgeous day and though Nicky chose to wait below and find phone service, I was glad to have enjoyed the climb alone. Once down the mountain, we popped into the Butterfly House, which was full of butterflies and not all that inspiring for me.

We had a long slow meal of scrumptious spaghetti, bread and wine in a little bistro.  It was great to hear her stories of Italy and I romanticized about perhaps starting a life here.  While buzzing through town in her tiny Austin mini, we were pulled over by the Cabinierri for driving the wrong way on a one-way street.  We had done this several times en route, so I suppose it was only a matter of time.  We were questioned as to why we had no identification (which is apparently required in Italy at all times).  It is also against the law to not take your receipt from a restaurant or store.  So bizarre. Regardless, the cops were mean and cold hearted.  Poor Nicky was so upset I thought she would cry and I knew they were hoping she would.  After an hour of berating and badgering, she was released with a hefty fine, which I added to my enormous ride fee and never looked back.  As the sun began it’s retreat, we headed home like Thelma and Louise enjoying the Tuscan views and reliving Pinocchio.

Back at the seniors home now, tempted to swim, but not too sure.  It did not rain as promised and it was another perfect day.  I can hear his majesty in the pool, so I suppose a swim is indeed in order.

Chrissy came out and gave an outstanding reading of the play and I am excited to see it in print. I am sure it is Oscar worthy. I suspect they will all chicken out but the idea of it still amuses me to no end. After a bit of hustle and bustle the troupe is off to the opera and I am finally a free woman once again.

I went back for another swim as the sun went down and the stars began to fill the sky.  It’s colder up here now and I wish I could have a fire, but instead I have wrapped myself in my blanket and taken up my place on the bench.

The stars are out and the darkness is wonderful.  The dog and I are listening to critters in the woods and I am completely content in this silence.  My intent is to drink this bottle of wine and pass out long before the cast returns.


Thanks for a glorious day,