Friday, June 23, 2017

I Heard It Through The Grapvine

As I've said before, Italy is all about connections.  Rather than setting out on your own it's always advisable to ask a local for the best place to buy anything, for the best restaurants, plumber, or doctor.  Additionally, Italians are definitely not shy about sharing their (unsolicited) opinions on any and everything.

Art and I both needed haircuts, so of course we asked around and decided to try the shop in nearby San Niccolo in Celle, just down the hill from us.  We stopped in Andrea's shop one day to make an appointment, then returned on the designated time and day, hoping we'd be able to communicate our wishes.  The first visit to any hairdresser is always challenging, but when trying to communicate in a foreign language, the challenge is even greater.  And yes, I will admit once again that my Italian leaves much to be desired.

The shop was small, but Andrea was assisted by a young woman and I was called to sit in the chair after only a few minutes, despite the fact that there were 3 other women already in various stages of cutting and/or coloring.  Because my hair is so short there wasn't a lot of direction needed, so I just put myself in Andrea's care and began to chat - more or less.  I can usually get my point across because I'm using the words I know.  If I use an incorrect verb tense, as I'm sure I do on a regular basis, the Italians are very kind and understand what I'm trying to say.  My problem begins once they respond, using words I don't know, often including contractions and dialect, in addition to verb tenses I don't recognize.  Reading a foreign language is so much easier than listening - nearly every word ends in a vowel and I rarely know where one word ends and the other begins.  But I persist!

Canalicchio_3247 Somehow the conversation took a turn and Andrea asked us if we'd ever been to Canalicchio.  No, we'd never heard of it, what is it, and where is it?  Andrea told us it was a small borgo that had been restored by a group from Rome, that it was beautiful, and that it was just above Deruta.  He told us to exit the E45 at Ripabianca and head towards Bastardo until we saw the signs.  Okay, our curiosity was piqued!

Relais Canalicchio_3288
Relais Canalicchio
A few days later we decided to check out Canalicchio for ourselves.  The drive up up up the hillside above Deruta was beautiful, and once we were almost there we spied what we were sure was Canalicchio - there was a medieval tower, surrounded by attached buildings, right at the top of the hill.  Wow!

The entire borgo is now a luxury hotel,RELAIS CANALICCHIO, and we just began wandering through the maze of buildings.  A few people appeared, members of a group that wa staying there.  Some were artists, others were walkers, and each group had found the ideal spot to pursue their interests - Umbria has something for everyone!

Here are a few more pictures from that day, and as always the whole album is available on our FLICKR PAGE

Relais Canalicchio_door_3254Relais Canalicchio_3260Umbria_Italy_3292Relais Canalicchio_3255

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