Sunday, November 25, 2012

Chocolate festival

im getting rather behind in my posting! sorry about that. a while ago we went to a chocolate festival in a small town outside rome
the towns are built on hills becasue it was wet and swampy in the valley years ago and there was more chance of getting sick because of the wet environment

it was a beautiful day in Norma

fat happy horses

in the chocolate factory, some of the old chocolate moulds

he is rolling and cutting out of the dough, delicious fresh doughnuts hot out the oil that you can have plain or filled with cream or chocolate, when they are filled the italian name is 'Bomba' which means bomb, a calorie bomb

the fresh deliciousness

the entertainment

the person who finished all the chocolate!

the millions of paragliders taking advantage of the clear skies

this is norma viewed from Sermoneta, another small town on the otherside of the valley

the corteo of costumed locals who parade through the town. as before in Marino, every town has this kind of parade and they wear original, beautiful dresses and suit type things

the king and queen


there are 3 people sqashed in there. this is an alleyway, no claustrophobic Sermonettans here

the old castle where everyone followed the corteo...

to a show of flailing flags and proud townspeople, it was so realistic and these guys were so proud

and very good

leaving the castle

many movies have been shot here and they announced that another movie would start filming the next day in the castle

it looks like a film set, gorgeous

cobblestoned streets. its a beautiful little town full on interesting nooks and crannies to discover, very picturesque, worth a visit, about 1 hour outside of rome by train but u need a car to get up to the towns

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Marino and its wine spewing fountain

so, let me explain about this weekend. in italy there are many food festivals called Sagras, where each town will celebrate something. now there are many small towns around rome and there are so many sagras that you can choose between a few each weekend. In the town of Marino is a wine region and on this particular weekend there was festival famous with young people because... there is a fountain that spews free wine. so many young people! i have no idea where they came from! they must have crawled out of the cracks in  the cobblestoned streets because i never would have believed that young people of this multitude existed in rome! it was quite refreshing aside from the crowded everything.
in this photo we are all waiting for a train, these are the people that couldnt fit on the last train that just left!

crowd control, pah haha

portrait in blue

amazingly we pushed and shoved our way to seats! and thank goodness because we waited in that stuffed train for an hour before leaving. the train ride is less than an hour. i was quite wary of the mass of people around us. young, excited people...

it really is quite a beautiful little town perched on a hill.

this is a photo of the fountain that spews wine before it started spewing. we decided against being there for this event on account of the crush of people. one of my colleagues told me about this festival because her mother lives in this town and my colleague Alessandra had been asked to be in the Corteo which is a procession of people dressed as the old royal families and villagers that used to inhabit this town. its quite a priviledge and the costumes are original and fantastic

as i said, imagine hundreds of people coming with the purpose of getting smashed, they sleep on the streets because there is no accommodation left, you buy wine of the region in 2L plastic bottles. it was pretty delicious. eat porchetta which is a roll with roasted pork on, eat mostra al vino- a sweet bread made with the pulp left over from wine, or a special soup that is served in a big hollow roll of bread. all very delicious

everyone is sloshed

the procession

Alessandra looking very regal

and they drunk until they could drink no more then threw up and got on a train  or got on a train and threw up, either way, we didnt stay for that part

and that was that sagra, after discovering this sagra thing, i am definitely going to go to many more.

i planted sunflowers and when i went to marino that weekend so very long ago, they had just peeped up through the soil to say hello to the sun. that was a very long time ago, now they are almost flowering in this stormy roman winter.  spots of yellow will go very well with the grey sky from my window view ;)