Sewing circle

I was invited recently to visit a sewing group in Casabasciana. My friend Erica belongs to the group. Members meet roughly once a week to sew together. Luciana leads the group. She has had many years experience as a professional seamstress with tailors who worked for high end brands and later with a dance company making exquisite costumes. How wonderful that she loves to share her knowledge and experience!

Luciana is the one in the pretty floral dress. The group is fluid, people come and go.

I was fascinated to see an old Pfaff sewing machine. I thought it must be about the same vintage as my beloved Bernina that I have been sewing on for almost 60 years.

I was proved to be correct when the original docket was produced from the purchase…1962.

Each person works on their own items on various machines and help each other with their work. I think this is an excellent idea, those with experience can help people learning to sew and it is nice to work in a friendly group. What a lovely way to spend an afternoon in the company of others doing something you enjoy.

Luciana has an interesting way of cutting out a garment. The paper pattern is secured in place with an old iron and chalk is used to outline the pattern, then the garment is cut.

She showed me some of the costumes she has made over the years. She has quite a collection.

The group has a few pretty skirts to sell to a dance or school group who might need some costumes. If anyone is interested they can call Luciana on 348 3627426

Thank you for inviting me to see the sewing group. Perhaps it will inspire others to form a group of their own.

Not everyone will have an amazing view from their sewing room like this one in Casabasciana.

The Albergo Corona, in conjunction with Fiorenzo Consulting and our wonderful local historian Virgilio Contrucci, is organising guided walks to discover the history of Bagni di Lucca.

The first one will be about the Grand Tour, a time when English people came to Bagni di Lucca as part of their travel to Italy. There will be 2 walks in this category. The first walk will be on 13th June and the second 1st August leaving the Corona Hotel at 9.30am. The cost of €40 will include a light lunch at the Corona Hotel at the conclusion of the walk. The commentary will be in Italian with English translation.

The second history walk will be about aristocrats and artists who helped shape Bagni di Lucca. There will be 2 walks in this category, the first on 19th June and the second on 1st August beginning at 9.30am. The €40 cost will include a light lunch at the Corona Hotel at the conclusion of the walk. The commentary will be in Italian with English translation.

The third group of walks will be about Puccini who spent some time in Bagni di Lucca during his career. The first walk will be on 26th June, the second on 24th July and the third on 15th August, all beginning at the 5.00pm. The guided walk will be followed by apericena at the Corona Hotel. The commentary will be in Italian with English translation.

The fourth group of walks will be in Montefegatesi, the first on 17th July and the second on 25th August at 5.00pm. Participants will gather at the Corona Hotel to be driven in a small bus to Montefegatesi where the walk will begin. The walks will conclude with aperitivo in the shadow of the Dante Alighieri monument at the top of beautiful Montefegatesi, the highest village in Bagni di Lucca.

All walks will take approximately 3 hours. To make further enquires or to book a tour please call 0583 923762 or email LaCorona.bookings@outlook.com

Bad and good news

The bad news is that Bagni di Lucca will be a red zone from Wednesday 24th March. At this stage it is just for 4 days, but I think it will go on longer and roll into the total Easter lockdown…we will see.

This is the latest map of the zones in Italy.

Within the orange zones there are small red zones.

The good news is that the SS Brennero is open at Borgo a Mozzano, pity we can’t go anywhere. Top marks to the workers who did this huge and dangerous job to clear the landslide.

Bring on the vaccine.

A new edition of Pieve di Controne

Ann Barsi is working on a new edition of the 2012 edition of Pieve di Controne, a book by Elio Carlotti on the history of the village. The 2012 edition, which was actually the second print, sold almost all 500 copies. The book sale proceeds help the Pieve parish and  those looking for their Pieve roots.

This edition would like to include more family pages, so anyone with a story to tell is encouraged to take a page in the book. It helps to make the book more personal with individual stories of the village and interesting tales of descendants’ lives, past and present.The Family Page could be your own family story, a family tree, photos and stories of life in the village.

Here are some examples of family pages.


You can help in 3 ways, pre-order the book, buy a Family Page or donate any amount.The books will cost €25 and a Family Page is €150.

For more information please contact Ann Barsi…abarsi@verizon.net

A fountain in La Villa

Sunday was fine with some sun so I went for a walk up to La Villa and spotted a fountain I have never seen before. It is on the edge of the SS Brennero near the Ponte Nuovo.

I think it is stunning and would love to know more about it. Perhaps somebody out there knows.

La Villa looked lovely in the afternoon sun.

Some more sunny days would be nice.

 

The Lima River

I returned from an overnight trip to find the Lima River turned into a raging torrent. Heavy rainfall and melting snow have sent huge amounts of water down the river. The level of the water went from about 1.5metres to 4.7 last night. It has dropped a bit today but it is still rushing past my window carrying logs and other debris with it.

…further down river.


I hope the high water doesn’t cause damage.

Snow at Ponte a Serraglio

I awoke to snow falling at Ponte a Serraglio. It started slowly and it looked as though it would melt before it hit the ground, but it gradually became heavier and began to turn everything white.

Ponte
By the late afternoon the snow was mostly gone, but it was lovely while it lasted.

Winter

Lately we have had snow in the higher villages in Bagni di Lucca. Along the Lima River it has mostly been raining. In a brief sunny time I drove up towards Montefegatesi to see some snow. It had melted in the village but the mountains around it looked gorgeous. The blue sky made a beautiful backdrop. In fact I think it was the star of the show today.


I drove through heavy fog on the way up. From above you can see it settled in the valleys.

Bare trees look wonderful.

Montefatesi always looks spectacular from any angle.


We have had some sun by the river. It doesn’t last long, but it is most welcome when it appears. Time to go for a walk or just to enjoy being outside.

It has been an interesting year, one which most of us will be happy to say goodbye to.
I wish you all a Happy New Year with health and happiness.