What does the beginning and Italy mean to me…
This topic is in response to the ladies who contribute to the Italy Roundtable inviting their readers to write about what the beginning and Italy means to them.
The tourist beginning
The first time I headed to Italy was as a tourist in 1997 on a quick tour around Italy. I went on a brief tour taking in the main tourist attractions like Rome, Florence, Milan as well as Siena, Capri, Lake Maggiore and Assisi and I knew that I wanted to come back.
Two years later I did, although this time I had moved to England, so I got to see a little more of Italy, including falling for a local.
The resident beginning – part 1
At the end of 1999 I moved to Italy to live. I was there until mid 2001, and then we spent five years in Australia.
The resident beginning – part 2
I want to write a bit more about how we came to live in Italy for the second time. In 2005 we had a holiday to England, France and Italy. Before we left my husband and I had been thinking about the idea of perhaps moving back to Italy and taking over a family business. Our issue was we weren’t sure what area to base ourselves in. Did we want to go with familiar territory, or did we wish to try to strike out somewhere new. Familiar territory would have been to have found something in Tuscania, Lazio. This is the town where my husband grew up.
For some reason, and I cannot remember why, we ended up heading over to Umbria and specifically targeted the hilltop town of Todi.
Not only were we tourists for the day, we were also potential house purchasers and we saw a house that I didn’t like. I call it the pigeon poo house, because it was full of poo and also carcasses of the poor birds. This property that we saw was large enough to have been turned into a B&B. At the time though, I wasn’t filled with any vision. Perhaps part of the reason why was the fact that I was feeling a trifle ill and nauseous as I had recently miscarried.
Our next house viewings were in an area close to where my husband had grown up. We went to see a semi-detached house that needed finishing on the outskirts of a town called Capodimonte in Lazio. Capodimonte is located on the shore of Lake Bolsena.
Our hearts were decided fairly quickly.
The only other potential contender was an apartment in the historic centre of Tuscania, but it didn’t have the outside space that we really wanted our children to have.
Basically we went back to Australia and thought about it and made a decision fairly quickly that we wanted to put an offer in for the house in Capodimonte. This was just the beginning of our house adventures in Italy.