Saturday, June 30, 2012

Italian Garden Tigullio Gulf Italy

Cari Amici (Dear Friends),

I wanted to share more images from my recent visit to the Villa Durazzo after my post about the inside of the building. The gardens surrounding the villa are lovely and trust me, my snapshots do not do it justice.

Here we are in Santa Margherita Ligure in the northwestern Italian coast, overlooking the Tigullio Gulf. Our host, a local boy (and friend), explained during our hike into the hills between his home and the nearby Portofino that the locals actually refer to this gulf as the “Gulf of Idiots,” but using a word that is slang for “idiot” in the dialect from Genoa. The people of Santa Margherita apparently earned this nickname when a whale was found inside the protected part of the gulf. The fishermen thought it was dead and tied it up. Someone later tried to climb on top of it, only to have the whale send a rush of air up through its blowhole. The whale escaped unharmed, but the town cannot live down this story.

Back to the gardens: I spoke with an old man in the garden who told me that some of the palm trees there were about 400 years old and started to show me how to determine the palm’s age. He was really sweet (and I have a thing for old people) and thus, I went back to speak with him again after we left the villa. I also wanted to point out one thing. In the back patio where you see the mosaic of pebbles in white and black, there is a well. It has REAL flowers placed around the top edge of the well and was simply gorgeous! It is so easy to see why people want to get married here. There is a special magic that occurs when mountains meet the sea.

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