We had a super holiday in England for Christmas and fortunately we weren’t affected by any of the awful flooding, save for the spectacle of rowers on Worcester racecourse thanks to the River Severn bursting its banks.
The children yelled their heads off at panto, sang English Christmas carols, and experienced the awe and wonder of T-Rex at the National History Museum.
With friends looking after the homestead for us we were able to switch off and enjoy a traditional English Christmas before coming back on New Year’s Day to the wide blue skies of Rustic Puglia.
In Italy the festive season continues until Epiphany on 6 January, a public holiday and one which sees restaurants heaving with diners enjoying this traditional Christian feast day. In England we recognise the day before as Twelfth Night, the date we traditionally take down the Christmas decorations. But in Italy the children hang their socks up for a visit by La Befana, a kindly witch who fills them with sweets if they’ve been good and coal if not.
Back to school today, but January and February are quiet months before picking up tools again in March to get ready for opening our doors to guests. It’s incredible how weatherbeaten the place gets over the space of a year, but a few tubs of whitewash and we’ll be all smart and sparkling again.
Every year brings a new adventure at Rustic Puglia and we wait with interest to see what 2014 brings. In the meantime, as the Italians say, Buon Anno and may it be a good one for you.