Friday, November 8, 2013

The Hills of Tuscany - Ferenc Máté

The idea of chucking it all here in the States and moving to a small place in a foreign country is a dream of mine. Several years ago, my husband and I had the chance to live in Germany for a short time; our love of travel and discovery was awakened. Ever since that junket, we've tried to think of a way to get back to Germany on a more permanent basis. We dream. We websearch places and towns in Bavaria. We dream.

Of course, that being said, we'd have to win the lottery. To feed the fantasy, I sometimes pick up books that take me to a different country, a different lifestyle, and a different climate. Good Lord, this latest book has gotten me hooked on the idea of getting my sorry butt to Italy's Tuscan region before I go belly up!

Ferenc Máté writes of he and his wife's decision to finally settle down, after a life of travel, living in a variety of unconventional places, bouncing around the globe at various jobs. The place they choose is Tuscany. The frantic search for a house drives the first half of the book, but interspersed are colorful descriptions of the landscape and the light of Tuscany, the food and wine, the friendliness of the local people, and some history of the region that charms Ferenc and his wife, Candace.

The second half of the book is a slow joyful settling in to the small house and the surrounding countryside. We meet the neighbors, the local townspeople and tradesmen. We learn a bit about farming, as Ferenc and Candace begin to reclaim the land surrounding their home. We hear about festive meals with neighbors and friends and forays into the countryside to forage for the ingredients of late suppers, languid picnics, and romantic interludes. It's all very dreamy and wonderful and is a perfect armchair vacation to a place that is sunny and picturesque, delicious and wine-soaked, romantic and timeless.

Yup ... Tuscany has been added to the bucket list. Thanks, Ferenc.

1 comment:

  1. I loved this post! My husband and I had a similar idea of moving to Spain, but settled for buying a restored home in a small village in a very inexpensive part of Spain (Galicia), and now we spend time there when we can. (We decided not to move because of the health insurance issue: Americans aren't eligible for national health, and private insurance is much too expensive; especially since we have a good plan here.) So, I have decided another way to enjoy Spain besides visiting is to write about it. It's another way to travel to the region we love so much.