On the suggestion of our landlord we got on the mid-lake ferry and visited the small medieval town of Varenna, across the lake from Bellagio.  The boat provided a new and different perspective on Bellagio – a breathtaking view on the tip of the peninsula, with its stately ochre buildings and contrasting evergreens.

We had lunch on a lovely terrace, looking at Bellagio across the water, and feasted on local fare: cheese, wine, and once more a ‘insalata caprese.’ I think I can eat this everyday.

We took the ferry back in time for Jim, whose workday follows American hours and thus starts at 3 PM sharp. We dropped him off and wound our way up the mountain to check out whether the restaurant on the top would be a nice place to celebrate the completion of Sita’s work on Saturday.

The restaurant is part of a working farm, a family business. Alessandro received us in English that was a lot less halting than what we have heard so far.  He explained that weekends are busy as the Milan crowd drives up into the mountains, many coming straight to his restaurant. But we were in time and reserved the best table in the house, for 7:30 – in time to enjoy the spectacular vista of the lake before and after it splits in two, first in daylight and then at night.

The restaurant has a vending machine. At first I thought it was filled with dessert, brown veined white triangles that looked like cheesecake on top and ice cream cups at the bottom. As it turned out, the automat was filled with farm products: various vacuum packed cheeses in the top sections and yogurt in the small containers below.

We then descended down to the beach where parking and bathing is free – one of the fee ‘libero’ places, where you could enjoy yourself and not spend a eurocent. The beaches here are rather pebbly which makes it hard to walk on and even harder to lie down on.  We swam, read, and then fell asleep – I am getting the hang of vacationing. It was a lovely warm Indian summer kind of day. With the setting sun we were reminded that fall is in the air and headed home.

So far we have been eating one kind or another of pasta every night – this night it was leftovers supplemented with a few enormous fresh spinach ricotta raviolis, served with a valeriana (veldsla) salad with very fresh and runny mozzarella and tomatoes, all prepared in our tiny IKEA kitchen.

Sita had an event and didn’t come home until 9 PM but we finally managed to get her and Faro to fall asleep before midnight. She is still in recovery and it shows, though the people she works for may not even realize it.

1 Response to “Views”

  1. 1 Kathleen Bliss September 7, 2012 at 11:46 pm

    Dear Sylvia, it is such a joy to read your account of this amazing trip and this breathtaking place. It is almost as spectacular as experiencing it first hand. It is also very reassuring to hear that Sita is doing as well as can be expected given her recent ordealS (emphasis on the plural). Thank you so much for sharing this with us! Enjoy the remainder of your sojourn— we will be following your escapades closely — and looking forward to hearing more about it when you return to Lobster Cove!
    With our love,
    Marc and Kathy

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September 2012
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