Category Archives: Rome-ing Around

Casino Ludovisi, a delightful treasure in the center of Rome

When I stroll through the centro storico in Rome, its streets filled with ancient palazzi and their huge wooden doors, I like to think about what’s behind the doors, and who owns and lives in these frescoed buildings. During the day these doors are often open and you can gaze in upon exquisite courtyards with…

Eating in Contigliano, northern Lazio

Locally produced grilled meats at Le Fontanelle seasoned with a bay leaf branch

Contigliano is Maurizio’s hometown. He was actually born in nearby Terni but every single relative on his mother’s side was born in Contigliano. And more than that: they were all born in the same family home, in the same iron frame bed, that I have kept and moved to our present home north of Rome….

Christmas Season in Rome…

Piazza Venezia

Here are a few pictures of Rome during the Christmas 2015 season. Nothing lifts the spirit more than shimmering Christmas lights, beautifully decorated Christmas trees, lovely shops and gorgeously packaged panettoni and other holiday treats! Piazza Venezia… The iconic Hassler Hotel at the top of the Spanish steps… Via del Babuino… These boxed panettoni are…

The Trevi Fountain reopens

National Geographic Traveler’s October 2015 article “101 Reasons to Travel Now” wisely featured “Spiffier Rome: The Pyramid, the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain and Domus Aurea (Emperor Nero’s villa) all show off much needed-and tasteful-touch-ups. Next: the Spanish Steps” as 21st on its list… an absolute must! This week the Trevi fountain reopened in full splendor! Prior…

Crostata di visciole

I invariably choose crostata di visciole for dessert when out for dinner. Visciole…those delightful cherries that are sweet yet tart at the same time…are just what I love at the end of a delicious meal. Last night at dinner everyone elected to top their dessert with a scoop of gelato so I went with the…

Positano’s Casa Cosenza

We’ve stayed in just about every room at the Casa Cosenza over the past thirty-plus years, each one with a breathtaking view of the spectacular Positano. Maurizio first brought me here when we were still fidanzati; I was here on vacation and spoke no Italian at the time. The whole weekend I was intoxicated: head…

Hibiscus flowers

Every morning one of my hibiscus plants has a new flower to share. They’re so intricate and beautiful with a rich array of color tones. I have a number of plants so I never know which plant will be offering up a gift. The plants love partial shade and regular watering. I place my hibiscus…

Everything old becomes new…

Recycled bicycle

An old rusty bicycle becomes a perfect prop for baskets of flowers. I saw this at a restaurant in Ponte Milvio, in north Rome and was charmed by it. Often what is old and rusty and no longer of utilitarian value takes on a new function of beauty. Old wheelbarrows, old shutters and doors, and…

Calvi, Umbria – the Festa di San Pancrazio

Calvi Festa di San Pancrazio

Calvi in Umbria lies just barely north of the Lazio region, along the Via Flaminia. If you happen by the area it’s well worth making a stop to take a look at this medieval borgo. From the hill town you can look down upon the rolling Umbrian countryside, as pictured above. The town’s major festival,…

The Arrotino or Knife Sharpener

This special bicycle was used by the arrotino to sharpen knives, throughout neighborhoods in Rome. The box on the front carries the tools of the trade, and the stone disk (center of the bike) is the sharpening device, powered by the arrotino’s bicycle pedals. I used to love seeing the arrotino in our neighborhood, but…