Posts Tagged ‘Sunsets’

Welcome and Benvenuti to all my Lovely Followers around The World,

As I write this blog the sun is peaking through the wintry clouds and we are celebrating still being a Yellow Zone in Tuscany. Here in Italy we have four zones from a Covid point of view; Red, Orange, Yellow and White. Red is the most restricted zone and whitehass no restrictions at all. Unfortunately there are not any white zones as yet but the country is rapidly turning yellow, which is good news.

And as if to further celebrate our yellow status, we have spotted a few Mimosa trees in blossom, but not many. March 8 will be when the blossoms are cut to celebrate Festa della Donna, International Women’s Day. Bunches of the pretty yellow flowers are gifted to the women we love or appreciate, no matter their status. So I hope there will still be blossoms on the trees then, we have had a few years of the blooms appearing rather too early!

Remaining on the subject of yellow, there are plenty of Italian fashion houses producing gorgeous outfits in this sunny colour and Italian men are not adverse to wearing daffodil yellow either! The on-line fashion houses are currently busy with sales; as much as 70% off some Italian fashion!

Meanwhile, it’s not just fashion here in Tuscany that hit’s the button. I was amazed to read an article in The Florentine magazine about how many products are actually manufactured in Tuscany and despite the virus, production has continued! In this picture you will see IVV glassware, Mangusta Yachts, Locman watches and Laika caravans, all made in Tuscany. ‘Tuscany’s focus on international trade is borne out in the share of Tuscan exports compared to total Italian exports, with a percentage of over 7.5%. Fashion, engineering and precious metalworking sectors are the primary sectors for exports. (Source: ISTAT, Italian Office for National Statistics)‘ for the full article written by Helen Farrell visit the latest magazine at http://www.theflorentine.it

And, what else would you like to hear about? A reader asked me if it’s warm here in January. Well, I have to say no, however, when the sun shines and the wind drops it’s perfectly possible to sit outside and enjoy an aperitivo before lunch! There are fabulous sunsets on some evenings. It’s not just the sun going down it’s the reflection on the opposite hillsides that take the breath away. The countryside can turn a bright orange for just a short period. This foto was taken this evening from my bedroom window!

Well, life is pretty good here in Tuscany. We returned to Paolo’s for another delicious lunch and the first daffodil is out in the garden! Yet more yellow. The government continues to be in disarray over arguments about how to spend the recovery funds being made available by the EU; there’ll probably be a new PM in place soon…. But these things don’t really effect us too much. We continue to work remotely and enjoy our morning espresso in Bar Querceto (our sitting room).

And, on the subject of working remotely, I’d best get back to the day job!

Have s great week, stay safe and well.

Salute June x

Visit me at http://www.junefinnigan.website


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Welcome and Benvenuti to all My Lovely followers around The World,

2019-03-03-10.11.50Yes, Spring has sprung early this year, hopefully we won’t get another nasty cold snap and kill things off. Bees have been buzzing for the last couple of weeks and I learnt recently that they take nectar from dandelions if there is nothing else available, so don’t dead head those weeds yet! Other insects are appearing as are small creatures like lizards, which is a little worrying as animals are starting to come out of hibernation a tad too early. Our resident Viper will no doubt appear soon; she had a big nest of swirling babys last spring. Our resident pheasant Phil, is sending out mating calls from various perches around the garden so we look forward to seeing one or more hens arriving.

2019-02-28-14.35.06This is also the time of year for finding Wild Asparagus. These are not the big thick stems you find in the supermarkets, oh no. They are lovely thin stems often missed growing amongst grasses that resemble them and under brambles. Well, you know me, I let other people hunt them down and then I buy and cook them. I was delighted to find a big fat bunch in a pot of water, just waiting to be grabbed by me at La dispensa in Fiano. There was enough for me to eat them three days running. Now, most of you know I am not the greatest of cooks; I like to do things the easy way. I snapped off the tough bits, then steamed for about five minutes, dropped them on to some baking paper, drizzled with olive oil, topped with pecorino cheese & pine nuts and baked in a hot oven until the cheese had browned. And, hey presto! I know you are out there clapping, which I appreciate.  I just hope my friend and neighbour the celebrity cook Judy Witts Francini isn’t reading this, she would probably hold her hands up in horror.  A local signora told me I should make risotto with them, but that’s too much like hard work.  PS you should go to Judy’s site and buy her wonderful Tuscan cook book!

2019-02-21-10.08.00Today is Sunday and the forecast is for temperatures up to 17 degrees centigrade! Well, I braved it this morning, popped on some thin tights and flats, so glad to have my feet out of boots. Meanwhile, I have been thinking about spring jackets and coats. Why is it that on every change of season, I find myself with nothing to wear? My man is horrified when I say this, he says I have a wardrobe full of stuff, how can I have nothing to wear? But you girls understand, don’t you? Then I saw this rather lovely coat in a magazine at Sandra’s hairdressers, perfect for the cool to warm weather, what do you think? I love it. And, the bag too!  But I could only find the bag on the website, which is a rather nice one, website that is, so I will have to do a bit more research!  Ah, I’ve found it in the Sale section!  The site is obviously still work in progress, so not brilliant to negotiate.  But the clothes are really gorgeous!

2019-02-26 18.21.30OK, enough of my fashion indulgences and time to go off for lunch at my daughter’s home between San Gimignano and Volterra.  Meanwhile, here is another sunset picture; it’s the time of year for fabulous skies every night.  Enjoy.

And, don’t ever say that I never indulge the man I love.  I do not eat or cook with eggs, but for him I am persuaded to cook pancakes on 5th March as it’s pancake day and he misses them more than words can say.  Bless him.

Have a great week and do drop me a line.  Visit my website at my site and email me at june.finnigan@virgin.net if you have not already received an invite to my Tuscan Rock Concert in June.

Salute June x

2017-05-07 17.25.58  35973101_10156419065890917_7876909049508265984_n

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Benvenuti to all my lovely Friends, Family and Followers around the World

2017-12-28 16.41.41

2017-12-31 09.30.10

As the last sunset of the year settles into a wonderful fiery horizon after a week of stormy clouds, we look forward to a year of wonderful achievements and even greater love, good health and friendships.  Here in Tuscany we raise a glass or three to those who cannot be with us this evening, but will be soon, and to those around the world no matter how far away.  fotos J Finnigan and La Nazione.

Have a wonderful 2018 and do drop me a line; I love to hear from you,

Salute June x  My Official Website





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Benvenuti to all my Lovely Loyal and New Followers

Holiday crush Chaos! La Nazione

Holiday crush Chaos!
La Nazione

“This is where he went on holiday or the commune ran out of money!  Or, there may be a demarkation line here…”  Of course my man is driving us to Certaldo and talking about the mechanical hedge trimming guy who is late trimming the roadside hedges this year, and seems to have done a bunk, as we English say.  Now in my view, the most likely reason for him disappearing having only completed half the job, is the mad dash to the seaside and mountains!

Ian Anderson and Jethro Tull wow the crowd in Cortona. La Nazione

Ian Anderson and Jethro Tull wow the crowd in Cortona.
La Nazione

Would you believe it, La Nazione has reported that 33 Million Italians have joined the fuga (escape) causing traffic, train and flight chaos.  Now this does happen every year and the last place you want to be in the first two weeks of August is here in Tuscany.  However, this seems to be worse than last year.  We went to our local Osteria for supper last Friday, and all the tables and chairs had been moved outside to cater for the non-Italian visiting tourists!   This was unfortunate for we locals, as we  actually like being inside in the cool, without having to compete with the zanzari (mosquitos) for air space.  But hey ho, life eeez good life eeez now….

But on the bright side, I read that Jethro Tull has had a brilliant concert and wowed the crowds with a whole new repertoire of tunes.  It seems that Ian Anderson the flutist has gone rather political in his older years.  But anyway, great to have him and his band here, performing in Cortona.

Silvio Berlusconi hands over AC Milan to the Chinese. La Nazione

Silvio Berlusconi hands over AC Milan to the Chinese.
La Nazione

Meanwhile Silvio has officially handed over AC Milan football club to the Chinese who may change the name to AC Peking; ha ha, only joking.  But god only knows what effect this will have on the team and the fans.  I can visualise chinese faces filling the stands and replacing some of the team members.  What do you think?

Fabulous sunset with moon last night. Foto J Finnigan

Fabulous sunset with moon last night.
Foto J Finnigan

But let’s remind ourselves how lucky we are living here in Beautiful Chianti.  It’s the time of year for fabulous sunsets and aperitivi in the shade of the Ash tree.  The humidity has gone and a breeze is wafting across these dolce hills.  So much so that my man decided to get his fitness regime going and walked across country from Fiano via Sticciano and Bacio to home after coffee last Sunday.  It took an hour and twenty minutes; Bravo to him!

Allora, time to think about getting this post to you and popping out for lunch at ‘C’era Una Volta in Luccardo’.  At least Paolo and his staff are not away on holiday!

Have a great week.

Salute June x

PS Visit my author site at http://www.amazon.com/author/junefinnigan

Chilled Aperitivi under the Ash Tree. Foto P Finnigan

Chilled Aperitivi under the Ash Tree. Foto P Finnigan

'My Father, The Assassin'. Book one in the series.

‘My Father, The Assassin’. Book one in the series.

'The Bolivian Connection' Book two in the series.

‘The Bolivian Connection’ Book two in the series.




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Benvenuti to all my lovely Loyal and New Followers

'La Dispensa' the new bar and alimentare in Fiano.

‘La Dispensa’ the new bar and alimentare in Fiano.  Foto J Finnigan

The lovely new family owners of 'La Dispensa' foto J Finnigan

The lovely new family owners of ‘La Dispensa’  foto J Finnigan

Hurrah, at last, our local village of Fiano has a new Cafe Bar and Alimentare after more than six months without being able to buy a coffee!  It is now called ‘La Dispensa’ which translates to larder or pantry. The Local butcher and his wife have completely refurbished the old one and yes, they have a meat counter, but you can also buy everything else you might need like fruit, veg, bread, cheese, milk, wines, beers, and frozen stuff.  Oh, yes and there is a bar for that all important coffee or aperitivo manned by their lovely daughter and they told me this morning that papers will be available to read from Tuesday!  They will be open every day, but not Sunday Evenings.  Well, thank god for that, Fiano at last has a heart again.

Colourful pictures of La Mercantia. La Natione.

Colourful pictures of La Mercantia. La Nazione.

Meanwhile, down in Certaldo the Mercantia has been going at full swing and cars were piling into the town on Saturday evening.  To avoid this massive influx of Italians and tourists, we drove in the opposite direction for supper at C’era una Volta, or ‘Paolo’s’ as the locals call it.  Go to http://www.ristorante-ceraunavolta.com  But even there, the new tourist arrivals were piling in even at nine-thirty in the evening, when we were leaving.  Saturday is arrivals day for most hotels, villas and Agriturismi in the area and in reality, we should have stayed home!  But we met some very nice Americans who obviously enjoy the good life, ordering the popular Bistecca (beefsteak) and all the trimmings.  If you guys are reading this, hope you all have a great holiday.

Well, we are three and a half months into our new home and it feels like we have been here forever; it’s so perfect.  But up until last Friday it was so hot and humid, it was difficult to know which doors and windows, if any, to leave open to try to get some breeze.  But thankfully, Friday it rained, not a lot and the humidity broke, so the new tourists will be enjoying themselves in lower temperatures of around 26 degrees centigrade instead of 35.  However, come tomorrow the temperature will start rising again!  But we don’t care about that, life eeez good, life eeez now!

Last Friday night we went back to L’Osteria Casa Chianti, also packed with both tourists and locals, so it’s essential you book a table there.  http://www.osteriadicasachianti.it  There was a fabulous sunset that night and when the owner, Massimiliano, called the diners out of the upstairs restaurant to a balcony, chairs scraped and people fell over themselves in the rush to get photos.  You would think that a UFO had landing or something!  Unbelievable!  OK, I guess we do take these things rather for granted being residents, but nevertheless!  My man of course, thought the whole thing hilarious.  I must have grumbled too loudly as he looked at me questionably and with a frown on his face.  “Am I embarrassing you?”  I asked.  “How could you do that, I’m sat at another table!”  He roared with laughter….  Oh very funny.  (I still love him)

Silvio Berlusconi
Photograph: Daniel Dal Zennaro/EPA

So how is poor old Silvio doing?  Well, he came out of hospital last Tuesday, looking very tired and older, and is now convalescing.  We wish him well.  It also seems that he is now finally selling his ownership if AC Milan football club to Chinese buyers despite his earlier misgivings.  His already inflated bank account will increase by 400M Euros over the next two years.  “I’m selling the club to people who can bring it back to where it belongs”  He said.  Ah, Thats OK then.

Well, time to think about Sunday lunch.

Wishing you all a happy and relaxed week and we’ll speak again soon.

Salute June x

PS Look out for the 60% discount on downloads of ‘My Father, The Assassin’ starting Saturday July 23rd and lasting seven days.  Visit http://www.amazon.com/author/junefinnigan

'My Father, The Assassin'. Book one in the series.

‘My Father, The Assassin’. Book one in the series.

'The Bolivian Connection' Book two in the series.

‘The Bolivian Connection’ Book two in the series.





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