Europe with Kids — Italy: One Thing I Loved Today


Seeing Bramasole, the house outside of Cortona, in Tuscany, that belongs to writer Frances Mayes

Like bazillions of others, I enjoyed Under the Tuscan Sun, by Frances Mayes, so, so many years ago — a confection, a fantasy, light and sweet. Except it wasn’t entirely a fantasy — Mayes really did come to Italy at a time of rediscovery and reinvention, and she bought a house that transformed her life. What’s not to like about that?

Today we drove to Cortona, about an hour and a half away from where we’re staying, near Castellina in Chianti, to see the town and house. The town is lovely, with an appealing, lively vibe; the house and gardens grand and impressive. (After much hard work, of course — go, Frances!)

But what I loved was seeing, in person, a solid, physical manifestation of change, good fortune, happiness — set in a foreign land.

Bramasole was inspiring.

It reminded me that anything can happen.

And I love that.


The shrine on an exterior wall at Bramasole. Say a prayer (or whatever). See what happens.

More things I’m loving about Italy:

Breakfast four ways

Campari by the pool

Our waiter in San Bartolomeo al Mare


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