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July 23, 2012

Summer Feste

In Tuscany, at this time of the year, there are plenty of superb summer festivals. In particular, many music and arts events to keep visitors entertained.  Particularly impressive are the many local festivals that nearly every small town has which draw the crowds from both from the local population and from the millions of visitors to the Tuscany region.  There are a number of all-night events in towns through the season where bric-a-brac and antique stalls, food vans and restaurants vie with music and art displays called La Nottambula ( I think it means something like, moving all night!). These begin at about 7 pm in the evening and go on until 5 am in the morning!  It is an Italian tradition that has been encouraged by local councils in these times of austerity to drum up more trade.  The one in Pescia attracted thousands of people, boy they do not do things by halves in Italy!

 For music fans there is the annual Lucca Festival where this year’s featured artists included  Duran Duran (are they really still playing!), Tom Petty and Kasabian.  They have been rocking fans in the town’s Piazza Napoleone.  However, this year we chose to go to the Pistoia Blues Festival in Piazza Duomo where the Scottish singer Paolo Nutini ( Pictured above, who’s father is from the Barga near Lucca.) gave a fantastic performance of  blues and soul songs.  See play list and other details

Pistoia Torre del Doumo

The concert was attended by around 4000 people and there was a lovely atmosphere throughout Pistoia for the whole evening.  Tickets for next years events and for this and the Lucca Festival can be found on the following links. and

Blurry image of Paolo Nutini on Stage

Vellano has not missed out, there have been events that take place from time to time.  Last Friday there was as Pink Floyd tribute band in the village square.  The sound of electric guitar strings echoing around the hill sides.

The great thing about living here is that you never need to worry about dining out of doors of an evening, the weather is invariably dry and warm.  Wherever you are there are the inviting smells of food being cooked and served, at a gentle chattering pace.  As well as local residents there are many people visiting Vellano who have holiday homes here who visit only occassionally but are invariably around in July and August.  It is always good to see them again and it also means an abundance of social life, food and good chatter.  We would like to thank them for making our quiet life here especially pleasurable.

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