Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Italian New Year - part I Esenta

Sara and I took off the day after Christmas for a week in Italy.  We were really looking forward to the trip and it beat all of our expectations.  The food was amazing, the weather decent, the sky blue, and the company amazing.

We started off our trip visiting my host family in Esenta.  I lived with them in 1999 for 7 months and have been back to visit a number of times (most recently July 2013).  Although Sara met host brother Marco at the wedding, this was her first chance to really get to meet my host family.  We had a great two day visit.  We spent most of our time around the kitchen table - eating, cleaning up, or preparing for the next meal.  After dinner, we went out for drinks with Jacopo and Marco and met a few of my old friends.  We also visited two nearby towns - Sirmione on Lago di Garda and Mantua (Mantova) - home to the famous Gonzaga family from the Renaissance.

The snow falling outside a house in Sirmione

Sara and me with Play - one of my oldest friends

Me with my host family - Daniela, Sergio, Jacopo, Marco
The steam rises off the lake
Sara's first grappa

Sara and me with my host parents

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