Marzo Pazzerello

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I arrived on Wednesday evening with the warm spring sun setting behind the green hills and casting a golden light on the hill town of Amelia. People were lighting their fireplaces in preparation for the evening meal and to fend off the chilly night air. The smell of wood smoke wrapped around me, taking me back to the years that I spent here. I felt like I was coming home.

Unfortunately the good weather did not hold; the weather at Easter is notoriously unpredictable and unsettled in Italy and this year the holiday is earlier than usual. This is a particularly bad year–it has only stopped raining for a few brief moments in the last few days. Although this has not made for the most pleasant holiday, it is good for local agriculture. Umbria had a very dry year and a lot of rain is needed to fill up the very meager aquifers. As I look out at the rain, I try to think of the positive effects of all of this water on the olive trees.

All I can do for now is take my place by the camino, stay warm and enjoy Mario’s wonderful cooking alle braccia (all finished with a lovely drizzle of olive oil).

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