It was so nice to sleep in, lazy around and get some laundry done today. The property surrounding our cottage was very relaxing…with flowers and wildlife all around. Giff had fun walking around taking close-up pictures and videos of the butterflies and bees. I on the other hand , did not enjoy the 1000’s of bees and hornets flying all around our place…and the spiders…oh and don’t forget about the mosquitos. After our uneventful day, we went to two of the small villages near us.
The first one was Lucignano…it was a small medieval village with the big fortress wall surrounding the town. We parked outside the wall and walked through the archway. The buildings were made of brick and stone and had the typical church at the center of the main square. We walked along…looking at the architecture and taking pictures of the bright-colored shutters with the old Italian women leaning out their windows.
The town was small so after walking through most of it, we drove another 20 kilometers back towards our place to see the town of Monte San Savino. This was another small medieval town with the big fortress wall and the huge entrance. We found another spot outside the wall and walked around looking for dinner. The town was very quiet and seemed pretty residential. This isn’t a typical tourist town…this one is more a local vibe.
We found a restaurant right outside the wall with a nice patio overlooking the countryside. We sat and ordered the chef special of three pasta courses of his choice. We also ordered a salad and due to a translation issue…it came out as plain cut lettuce…nothing in it at all, not even a slice of tomato. The first pasta that came out was a rosemary risotto. The servings were pretty small because there were three different types to taste. The risotto was unfortunately undercooked…it was almost crunchy and the rosemary was very overwhelming. The second pasta was served in a truffle cream sauce. This one was pretty good…it’s texture was creamy but also had a crunch to it as we chewed through the truffle shavings. The last course was not so great…it was served in a butter sauce with a few bites of fish. Over all, the place was just OK…we would rate it a 6 out of 10. We did however have a good time sitting and eating a leisurely dinner.
We went back to our place and caught up on some internet “work” before bed.
Published by Giff Kabat
I grew up in Ohio as a kid, so of course I went to college at “THE” Ohio State University. I graduated in 2001 with a major in business finance. A month after graduation, I moved out to California with my college girlfriend (whom I married in 2005)…and started my career in sales (industrial sales for 5 years…then moved into medical laser sales for 4 years).
In 2009 I was 31 years old. I had a great job, a new house, and a beautiful wife. Just when I thought things couldn’t get any better…my wife and I found out we were going to have a baby. Everything was going according to plan…and I couldn’t have scripted a better life for myself.
Then in the same year…everything changed. My wife, Brandey, called me when I was on my way to work and told me over the phone, something I never thought could be possible in a million years. My beautiful 30-year old pregnant wife was just told that she had breast cancer. At that moment, everything stopped all at once. I immediately went to her…and learned of our new plan…which began with her needing surgery immediately…and the rest we would find out later.
The day we returned from the hospital after Brandey’s surgery…my father died. He had been battling an aggressive cancer of his own…and although he was the one person I wanted to speak with about Brandey having cancer…I never told him. My sister, Brooke, had just gotten married a few months ago, and although he was weak, he was able to walk his little girl down the aisle of her wedding. On the night before my sister’s wedding, Brandey and I told him that we were pregnant and about to make him a grandfather. It made no sense to tell him that everything had changed for us…so he died in peace knowing everything was “the way it should be” for his only 2 children.
2010 was the worst year of my life. We had lost our baby…and for 12 months I watched my wife fight cancer with multiple surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation treatments, and drug therapy. It was a difficult year for us…but we made it. When you go through something like this in life, you learn a lot about yourself and the people around you. I was amazed at the strength and courage of my wife…and how many good people there are in this world. I will be forever grateful for the ones who never ceased to amaze me with their kindness during this hard time. Family, friends, and sometimes complete strangers…helped us make it through this. I am, and will always be especially grateful to my mother, who was with my dad at the very end, when I couldn’t be there, and when things were at their worst. She has been so supportive throughout all of this, and without her everything would have been so much harder for me.
It’s 2011 now…and the plan we have for our life this year…is to make it the best year of our lives. Brandey is officially in remission from breast cancer and she has a 95% chance the cancer will never come back. Besides the love that I have for my wife and family, the loves of my life are food, wine, and adventure travel. My wife and I love traveling to new places, seeing natural wonders, and meeting new people from different parts of the world. So for the next 400 days…we’ve decided to travel the world…and celebrate our lives. There are so many things I took for granted in life that I will never take for granted again. My father worked for over 30 years at the same job with the same company…rarely took time off…and died at 64 years old right after his retirement. For me, this trip is a combination of a tribute to him, along with wanting to spend the time of my life with the “love of my life.”
* The only thing I will miss while we are gone is our family and friends (who we hope will meet us somewhere throughout our trip) and especially our 3 little kitties we left with my mom in Ohio to catsit for the next 400 days. I will also miss watching “American Football” over the weekend…but I’ll do my best to check the scores in the middle of the night.
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One Reply to “Day 140 of 400: Monte San Savino and Lucignano – Italy”
Thank you for my butterfly video!!!