We visited the area around Rufina today, about half an hour east of us. The trip was on the spur of the moment as Ana refused to sleep so we decided an afternoon drive would do the trick (she was asleep before the end of the driveway - there is real satisfaction that comes from tricking one's children!). We had thought we were only driving a long distance to an ice-cream shop (yes, still hot enough for ice-creams). However, the added bonus was discovering the most beautiful part of Tuscany we believe we have seen so far. Incredible countryside and the light and colours just blew us away. It may be that the time of year, with some autumn leaves appearing, has added to the beauty but the olive groves, vineyards, hills and golden houses were just amazing. Some pictures to give you the idea (although they don't do the area justice):
I can't believe that we haven't visited the region before so for those of you still coming to visit (you know who you are!!), we will do this trip with you. We discovered a couple of restaurants that look perfect for a long, long lunch.
My parents arrived last Friday and on Saturday, Ralph and I took off to Brussels for three days to celebrate a friend's 40th. Brussels was cold so for the first time we had to hunt out our winter clothes. We had a great weekend - fantastic dinner on Saturday night at the Belga Queen followed by some dancing at the Irish Pub nearby. Fabulous! The next day we wandered around the old part of Brussels, saw the friends off back home to The Hague, then went out for dinner and a movie, the first in 5 months! Not much to see in Brussels so we weren't sad to arrive back home. And as it has been sunny and 26 degrees all week, we're loving having the heat back.
That's it for this week. Otherwise, life continues pretty much normally here. As mentioned, still warm and sunny...long may it last! We're continuing to love Tuscany and Italy and it's hard to think about our end date...but the flights are now booked to London for the end of November so unless a miracle occurs, we'll be off then. Very hard to think about it!
Ciao for now.