Aura

Aura – a breath of golden hue around a special person. We can all feel it at a particular place or in unusual circumstances, when the intensity of the lived moment thrills one almost into a momentary state of extasy close to fainting. The mind blanks out for a...

Ignorance

The sun filters through golden leaves in the early afternoon. The grass in front lawns and the meadows further out in the countryside is bright green. No frosts to freeze it brown – yet. The leaves make a pleasing pattern on a green background. Dogs are out in even...

A Country Feast

We were told that the mill where we have taken our olive harvest for years was hosting a supper in aid of the restoration of the local church. ‘Why don’t you come?’ I was asked to pay at the local bar, but they only wanted my name and how many in our group. We were to...

Ferrara II

Isabella d’Este learnt the prestige value of artistic patronage, and she indulged it when she became the Marchioness of Mantua. Before her, the Gonzaga family were noteworthy patrons. Their court artist, Andrea Mangegna, created some of the most striking series of...

Ferrara

Slanting across northern Italy between the Alps and the Apennines is the Val Padana is the plaIn where the river Po flows through probably the most extensive cultivation of rice in Europe. After the disintegration of the Roman Empire from the fourth century A.D....