Several Slightly Spooky Short Stories set on and around the Italian Riviera

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Start your review of Extra Virgin Italy series, 1. This delightful story is now among my favorites. This is the story of Annie and Lucy Hawes, twenty-somethings from Britain who go to Italy for a week agricultural job in a village. Over the following months and years, they fix up the rustic dwelling and the surrounding olive grove, living in Italy part-time and returning to Britain for work.

I can say without hesitation that if you like this genre, you will love this particular example of it. My reasons are these: Her love for Italy. Her affection for the country and for her neighbors and friends is apparent. These pages are peopled with authentic voices and characters, not caricatures.

Her distinctive voice. The grammar is sometimes quirky, but never accidentally so; the occasional sentence fragment or Creative Capitalization is chosen for effect. Her sense of humor. When you travel or live in an unfamiliar country, the opportunity to look like a clown arises often. You have to be able to laugh at yourself. Hawes has this ability, and she makes us laugh along. At the same time, I came to deeply admire her.

She adjusted, connected, found friends and allies, made a new life. Writers who observe the boundaries too faithfully end up leaving the reader hanging. How did this problem work out? Did that character come to a good end or a bad one? To not find out how things went would only leave us readers frustrated. But with her attention to our needs, we finish the book completely satisfied, instead.

View 1 comment. Oct 11, Velvetink rated it really liked it Shelves: autobiography-memoir , society-culture , environmental , italy-mediterranean , plants-botany , travel , food-diet-health-etc , read , uk. Well right now a full review will have to wait as I am knee deep in practice exercises in cataloguing and i am sneaking a short break. I think I have chanced upon some solutions to my home renovation problems we are still living post flood conditions.

While the roof doesn't leak anymore everything needs repainting and it seems lime is the answer. What a incredible thing Lime is! What a incredible thing Lime is!. Lime out of the ground that is, not the tree, although Lime fruit has it's uses too. Lime wash for walls - exterior and interior and your floors and furniture.

Purify your natural water supply!. Still foodies will love the descriptions of preparing traditional Italian food as Annie learns from the locals. There's a wealth of Italian superstitions surrounding olives and food and many have surprising health benefits. Well my break was too short Jul 09, Maria rated it really liked it Recommends it for: those with a travel bug. Shelves: worth-keeping. Despite my slight embarrassment at the title, I bought this book in a uk airport for the trip home and was instantly drawn in.

I had just returned from a month long trip to Italy so I had no problems recalling the images of Cinque Terra. Similar, but superior, to Under the Tuscan Sun. A foreign woman buys a broken down place in Italy. The book focuses mainly on her and her sister's plight to assimilate from how much coffee and wine they consume to how to get a haggard vespa up a rocky hill. Details that others may find boring, I easily related to, having just finished my study abroad program.

Nov 16, Genevieve rated it really liked it Shelves: italy , travel. A lovely book, full of self-deprecating humor.


Unlike so many of the expatriate-in-Italy books, this one is light on the home renovation although it does occur and centers on a woman and her more sensible sister as they find their way into the social fabric of a small village. The book is full of observations that are chatty and unconstrained, and make no attempt to write poetic phrases about the beauties they are surrounded by, or the charms of the simple peasant lifestyle. They simply live t A lovely book, full of self-deprecating humor.

They simply live there, enjoying the good things, finding ways to cope with the rough spots, and enjoying the community they are now a part of. An utter charmer of a book. Sep 25, Suanne Laqueur rated it really liked it. Somehow or other I got a galley proof copy of this in I cannot for the life of me remember where. But I still have it and I read it every other year or so, typos and all.

I love armchair travel and travel memoir and "A year in Wherever" type books. And I love this one. Jun 20, Becky rated it it was amazing. This is one of the best books I have read about a person adapting to living in another country. The author is an English woman who moves to a small town in Northern Italy.

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I enjoyed reading about the Italian ideas of how one should eat, drink, or even swim. For example, I learned that "to go swimming in seawater outside the month of July or August is even worse for your health than drinking cappuccino after twelve noon! View 2 comments. Mar 16, Jodi rated it it was amazing Shelves: travelogue , italy , bookcrossing-books , favorite-books.

It was definitely one of the best I read in The author's writing was so skillful I could just imagine myself in her situation, at every sensory level. As I'm a fan of Italian food anyway, this book constantly made me hungry while I was reading it. I also enjoyed learning much more about the production of olives and olive oil than I've ever known before. Jun 30, Shugga rated it did not like it.

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It took me just about 1 month to read this book. I kept putting it aside, it was very wordy and very boring. If Annie Hawes called the Italian people she was living with peasants, one more time, I was going to burn the book. This was a bookclub selection and I had to try to finish it. Aug 18, Suzi rated it really liked it.

Italy Tours & Vacations

Consider the cultural variety The Christmas markets sell a variety of products, which reflect the culture of the region. You can buy all kinds of Christmas merchandise and gifts, especially traditional things such as crib figurines, toys, wood carvings, marionettes, candles and lambskin shoes to place underneath your Christmas three. The ambience of a typical Christmas market is further enhanced by the aromas of mulled wine, hot chestnuts, grilled sausages and other tasty snacks like gingerbread biscuits known as Lebkuchen or marzipan figures.

Based on this, it is difficult to outline, which one to visit and we would therefore suggest to visit at least two or three of them. The traditional Christmas markets date back to the Middle Ages, long before Germany became a nation state, so some of them have ended up just outside its modern borders, in Austria, Switzerland and Alsace. But they all look much alike — a set of wooden huts lit up with fairy lights, selling traditional decorations and warming tasty food and drink. A brief Google survey revealed the top cities for Christmas Market break in Germany, i.

Christmas Market of Munich at Marienplatz, the one in Dresden, Nuremberg, Berlin, which is home to 60 different Christmas markets, Cologne and last but not least Rothenburg ob der Tauber, which is home to the Christmas Museum. Hint: Contact us for a perfect itinerary, which includes the best cities of Germany to visit during the Christmas season. Plan your visit of Christmas markets wisely and note that the Remembrance Day is celebrated on the fifth Sunday before Christmas, so you can expect many of the markets to be closed as this is a public holiday.

But when the Christmas lights turn on and the Christmas atmosphere steps in and embraces the area, the landscape becomes even more magical.

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Similar to the rest of Europe, also Christmas markets in Scandinavia generally take place from late November until Christmas. While the biggest Christmas market in Sweden takes place in Gothenburg, Stockholm boasts to have many, in different locations. It is the oldest and dates from But if you travel with children, Grona Lund amusement park should be your No. In Norway, the Christmas Market in Oslo is the most notable one. In one word: it is huge. Located at the harbour in front of the Oslo City Hall, it boasts a number of Christmas booths and magnificent decorations.

Apart from this, a number of open-air concerts and other performances takes place there. At Happy Tours, we have made a little investigation and checked which markets in the Central part and Eastern part of Europe rank among the best.

Here is a short overview, which will help you decide which Christmas market to visit this year.