Meet Paola and Massimo (and Toby) from Anchiano

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This is Toby.

Anchiano is actually part of the nearby town of Borgo a Mozzano, but lovely Paola and Massimo are regulars at Il Monaco at Ponte a Serraglio, so I have made them honorary Bagni di Luccans.

Paola invited me for lunch recently with a promise that she would show me her pretty village. I know that Paola is a great cook (she also gives wonderful cooking lessons) so I was delighted to accept the invitation.

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I’ll show you lunch first, then their beautiful house and the village.

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Paola at work in the kitchen.

They have done a wonderful job renovating 2 old houses in Anchiano. They live in one and rent the other occasionally.

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After lunch we headed off with Paola as our guide to discover Anchiano. I shouldn’t have waited so long to go to Anchiano, it is quite lovely.The village is not far off the road which goes between Lucca and Bagni di Lucca.

It is a very pretty little village with beautiful views of the surrounding area from some of the higher parts of the town.

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We wandered through the town, heading slowly up to the church on the top of the hill.

First stop was the old washing area which once would have been a very busy part of the village.

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The water pressure is quite something.

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It is a fun place for the children to play.

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The streets are narrow and winding, but mostly flat so the walking is easy.

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As is the case in all of these villages, there are always interesting things to discover.

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Toby met a friend along the way.

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The church looks quite impressive from below.

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The war memorial near the church.

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The village from the church grounds.

Just below the church is a part of the Gottica Line, with fortifications left over from WWII.

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The cemetery below the church is beautifully kept.

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The residents come regularly to tend the graves and water the plants.

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Everyone has their own water bottle.

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Soon spring will come and fill the village with colour.

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The wisteria vine will soon be covered with gorgeous lilac blossoms.

If you would like to arrange cooking lessons with Paola email her at …..paola.mori@alice.it.

Paola is a lot of fun and her cooking lessons are great. If you greet her in English don’t be surprised if she responds with a lovely Scottish accent. Her father was born in Barga, the most Scottish town in Italy.

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Paola’s ducks said goodbye as we were leaving.

Information for locals…. There is to be a dinner dance at the Hotel Milano on 23rd March. That sounds like fun!

18 thoughts on “Meet Paola and Massimo (and Toby) from Anchiano

  1. We have driven past Anchiano quite a few times and I always wanted to have a look. You have just confirmed that it is the right thing to do!! The food looks lovely… What a feast! Very enjoyable.

  2. Great post!!. Anchiano has a cooperation with Christian’s home town in Norway, Ålesund. Just before you get to Anchiano you can see a sign saying this and the Norwegian flag! When I was there last year I also saw streets which are called “Via Norvegese”, something like Norwegian street… :))) Hugs, Rose

  3. Lunch? It looks like a banquet. The expression in Toby’s eyes is heart-melting. Enchanting village and wonderful photos as usual Debra. If you are only now getting to know all these villages, what hope do we have in two weeks? You should have warned us. Perhaps you did and we weren’t listening. Barga with an “ra” left off the end, is almost the same as my township of Bargara but doesn’t look anything like my seaside village in Queensland! Thank you as always.

  4. It’s like I visited through your eyes, I love all the details and the story you created! The food looks glorious and the village just charming! The house is great, I’d love to hear more about the renovation if they are interested to feature over at Renovating Italy. And of course Toby’s friend…look forward to hearing about your exploration of the villages that make up Bagni di Lucca. ciao lisa

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