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come right in, take your shoes off, have a glass of wine....

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

LOL in Paradiso

I spent most of the month of July in Tuscany. Chianti, to be exact. This trip did not involve one of my "usual" tours (3 nites in Florence, 7 nites in Chianti)...no, this time it was all about a few females lettin' loose, gettin' down, havin' fun - it was a laughin'-out-loud time that all people should have the pleasure of experiencing during their lifetime.

Okay, so maybe we still had to do some necessary laundry, but even that was more fun than doing laundry at home...and I do remember laughing at some of my sister's underwear. Everything in Tuscany seems better... call me crazy because I have firsthand knowledge of how frustrating it can be when things aren't the same, as easy, right there, understandable, or modern. The fact is, I don't care. Because all that is negated by the beauty, the magic, the views, the people, the food, the wine, the everything that makes Tuscany the land of my heart. Just look.

Making things even better (and here's where some of the laughin'-out-loud part comes in) is that one of the females is my lifelong friend, Lynne, who I have known since 7th grade. Seems laughing was one of the things we did... and do... best and most often. She got back to the states before I did and when we had our first stateside conversation, she said, "I want to go back!" That's my kind of girl. The fact that she is really nice looking didn't hurt things a bit since blondeness attracts Italian men like sauce to pasta. One of the LOL occurrences happened when, on different occasions, we were both approached by young men. The word "cougar" flashed across my mind. And Lynne had on leopard-print shoes. Do you think their flirtiness might have been because they were waiters and they know Americans are big tippers and there were no males in our company? Noooooo, not at all.... just look.

Let's just say that we got really good food service and the waiters were tipped nicely.

Shopping (and we did a lot of it) was also responsible for provoking LOLOL (lots of laughing out loud). In Castellina, Lynne declared that she could not live without this huge, beautiful olive tree cutting board. It was practically as big as she was and much heavier. After the purchase (did I mention that we'd had wine with lunch - lots of wine with lunch), this gigantic board had to be carried back to our car. The ramp going down into the lot was very steep and called for a two-female effort. I suggested my sister, Dede, because she's a lawyer. I figured she could sue easier than I could. This undertaking probably would not have been so dangerous if there had been no laughing. Just look.

From the photos, the ramp doesn't look nearly as steep as it is and I probably should have assisted in their effort, but then there would be no photographic history.

We went to many of my friends' wineries and had such good times. And to Fabrizio&Carolyn's Bar Dante. And to Franco Lombardi's olive farm. And to Nora's cashmere goat farm. And to our favorite pizza place. We talked, ate, drank, shopped, and laughed. we even did some educational things but I can't think of any at the moment. Just look.

I enjoy all my tours and the travelers that go on them, but this trip with close friends (I regard my sister as a very close friend) was absolutely special. It makes me smile just to think about it. And sometimes I laugh out loud.