Piazza Scacchi, Marostica
Great weather, great food, and a healthy dose of fresh air did us all a lot of good for the long holiday weekend. We headed out to the province of Vicenza which sits halfway between Verona and Venice in the Veneto region. The agriturismo (italian farmstay) that stayed at was situated not far from Marostica where this photo was taken. If you haven’t already guessed, it is Piazza degli Scacchi, known all over the world for the human chess game in September on even years. Marostica is also famous for its cherries and the spring season is the best time to visit to see cherry and other fruit trees in bloom.
We switched to daylight savings time on Sunday morning so it was nice to wake up “late” on Easter. Currently the forecast is rain – right on cue for the month of April showers. Hiking and food posts coming up. And this is Hugo greeting us a good morning at the agriturismo.
Lenna (Bergamo) – On your mark, get set……Mooooo! And a whole lot of mooing it was at the mungitura a mano (hand milking) competition held in Val Brembana just last week. For being the 1st edition, this event was well-organized and attracted a mixed crowd of all ages. Switzerland, Romania, India and Italy were represented among the 43 contestants (7 of them women). Go Italy!!!! Giving it their udder best XD, participants took to the teats in a contest to extract as much milk as possible within the set time of 2 minutes.
A 31-year old man from the Brescia province took the title with a winning total of 8.7 liters – that’s just over 2 gallons – beating the previous Guinness World Record. Here’s a short clip that I put together and as you can see it was a great day out for everyone. Hopefully it will evolve into something bigger (food stands, markets selling local produce, games for the kids, etc) and become an occasion to look forward to each year.
Clang-clang! Woof! Woof! Woof! Mooooooooo! A busy day in the chestnut forest. The cacophonous din of enormous cowbells and barking dogs announced the arrival of the small herd from miles away. Around this time of the year, I have come to know these sounds all too well, and I quickly put the dogs on a leash and took them down to the gate for the show.</p
After the chestnuts, the persimmons, and the vibrant colors turning on the leaves, la transumanza (the transhumance) is another one of those quaint occasions to mark the change in seasons. I can say with a fair amount of certainty that the snowfall of this past Sunday is the reason behind the herd’s movement from higher altitude. We’ve seen masses of sheep and goats before, but this is the first time I’ve seen cows taking over the road.
One of the shepherd dogs ran up to our gate to greet the westie (the doxie wasn’t thrilled at all) before running off back to work. Regardless of whether it was a he or a she, the brief visit was as if it had been an invite to join the circus. Yeah (woof), you could get all dirty and stinky (woof woof) and there won’t be any human to insist on a bath. What are you waiting for?