Friday, May 25, 2012

Alessandro Tambellini

This has been a dramatic week for Italy. Here we are at the centre of the Euro crisis and this month there were local elections. Many Italians showed their lack of faith in the hard measures that are being put in place by Monti’s government. It seems ordinary people are the ones suffering while MPs have refused to take a salary cut!

Lucca has for the past 15 years been a right wing city in a left wing region but this week that all changed when citizens voted by 70% for the left candidate
Alessandro Tambellini. 
Tambellini by profession is an Italian teacher in a local High School.
We were walking home yesterday when we saw a cheering crowd surrounding Alessandro Tambellini giving his first interview as a mayor. I took a picture with of this historic moment on my rather aged mobile phone. 

Massimo Betti

Bagni di Lucca another right wing stronghold made an even bigger political statement by electing Massimo Betti as mayor. He run as a private citizen without any political alliance but wants to protect the wonderful beauty of the area and make it an attractive place to life. Betti wants to attract foreign residents and bring employment to the area so the young don’t have to leave. Massimo is a member of one of the historical families of Bagni di Lucca and indeed Puccini used to stay with them during is many visits to the town. Massimo’s chemist shop also has royal connections and the door bear the coat of arms of the late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
These are interesting and challenging times for this new generation of politicians so lets hope they both take good care of these beautiful historic towns.

photo by panarama

However these victories have been over showered by a the horrific act of what seems like an madman who placed a bomb outside a school in Brindisi killing a 16 year old girl and injuring 5 of her companions, one very seriously. Italy was under shock that such a terrorist act could be committed, when a natural disaster hit Emilia Region in the north of the country. Six people lost their lives, historic centres were destroyed. 400,000 wheels of the famous Parmesan and Grana Padano cheese were damaged when the racks they were ageing on collapsed.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Wild Flowers in Tuscany

Galactites Tormentosa

A selection of 73 species of wild flowers on our hill side beautifully photographed and catalogued by David Hirschowitz.

Basil thyme acinos arvensis
Bryony white - Bryonia dioica
Carpatian dog - daisy anthemis carpatica
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Campion bladder
Carthusian pink dianthus
Clove alsike & bee
Clover crimson trifolium
Crocus versicolor
Yellow chamomile anthemis tinctoria
Cypress spurge euphorbia cyparissias
Clematis recta
Yarrow Achillea millefolium
Viola tricolor
Soncus oleraceus