Busy in the garden

Warm sun yesterday found me once again in the garden.  A second cut of the lawns, a thorough clean of the swimming pool, no, the pool is not open, the water is far too cold, however I spent a delicious hour sweeping the pool with the sun on my back.  Pushing the brush back and forth, the crystalline waters sparkling, it was tempting to strip off and take a plunge, but the water temperature said nohowever with the sun forecast to continue we might get into the pool in time for Easter!

plum tree in flower at Bellaugello gay resort travelThe fruit trees, plums, apricots, apples and the almond trees are in full bloom, hyacinths planted deep in the soil in the pots have burst forth, their blue fragrant blooms bursting up to the sunlight, daffodils – those not yet eaten by the Istrice are swaying in the gentle breeze.  Wild flowers abound, the garden offering so much, and making a heavy day of maintenance thoroughly enjoyable.

I think I have just learnt how to upload videos to my blog!

On our way back from dinner the other evening in our local town of Gubbio we stopped in the piazza of S Martino as the miserere was being sung. Despite the rain and our lack of wet weather gear, the host of umbrellas held by the the singers hiding underneath same, it was utterly entrancing and we just had to stop.
This was just one of the chantings in the weeks that run up to Easter
A taste of Good Friday and the “Processione di Cristo Morto” which takes place throughout the old town commencing just before sunset.

Sunshine and snow, you have to see the funny side

As we prepare for the upcoming season at Bellaugello Gay Guest House we are confronted by snow and sunshine simultaneously.  It is a glorious day, the sun is hot, the wind bitter, and both make life just a little bit more fun.

New purchases for the suites need to be taken round, unwrapped, and put in place, ever so exciting.  I have ordered some fabulous brightly coloured retro chairs and sunloungers for some of the terraces, and am swithering on bright acid coloured sunshades for around our infinity swimming pool, I think they will be ok, I love the colours, the idea, they will go with the modern pool, but must not clash with the terracotta and honey coloured stone of the buildings. Hence I am slightly unsure so have not hit the ‘order now’ button.  You will have to wait and see if I have gone ahead with one or all of  lime green, cerise and azure sunshades!  I still have to find little tables to go next to our sleek black pool sun loungers, why is it that I cannot find a simple small low metal table that I like that is not ridiculously unstable, fragile or over-priced?  All I want is somewhere for guys to be able to put their iPads, books, suncream and bits and bobs.  I have searched and searched to no avail.

As previous guests here will be aware, as every suite has its own private entrance and terrace, so going round every suite involves accessing all parts of the building from the outside.  Today that involves putting on a winter jacket and trudging through driving snowflakes that because of the sun refuse to settle, but instead make lots of mud, the dining room previously sparkly clean is now less so. huh!

And talking of mud there is lots of it, and in all the places t hat I do not want it.  Last year in the summer drought the lawns suffered here, they look very bald in patches and require re-seeding, a job that I did a great deal of last year, all seemingly to no avail.  The spring last year saw verdant lawns, then came the drought and we just did not have enough water to spare so the lawns had to be given low priority.  So the compost has once again been delivered, the lawn seed is here, the fertiliser too all I need is a dry wind free day – why oh why does lawnseed blow so readily into newly weeded flowerbeds, and the promise of no more frosts or snow.

As we settle into and try and acclimatise the many changes in Rome, I learn that there are also changes in the administration of our local lovely town of Gubbio.  It seems the chief of the infrastructure  department has been ousted, there is now a new person in post, someone did refer to her as Cruella DeVille, I hope not! who will she round up?  To me this change must be an improvement, maybe finally we will see some real action on addressing many of the infrastructure and environmental problems in the commune, that have been summarily ignored.  I also learn that the young Mayor sadly whilst driving his car ran into and killed a local lady.  It seems his time at the top of the tree is numbered.  I wonder who now one of the powers behind the throne has gone they will find to replace him.  It is rumoured that there are to be elections for the local administration, maybe another comedian will be found, after all they seem to be the fashion right now.

Life here in Umbria is certainly interesting


Space to fill at Easter

I had tried to write a catchy header to this post, but my brain is away somewhere else and for once I cannot link the two themes of this post with the correct heading…

Firstly owing to a cancellation I have two suites available for the Easter weekend, that is the last weekend of this month, come when you want, but do stay for Easter Sunday when we will be rolling Easter Eggs and having much silly fun.

With many traditional festivals and processions Easter is a great time here in Umbria.  In out nearby city of Gubbio the weekend starts with the procession of  “Christo Morto” an ancient procession throughout the town centre, with chanting, singing and participants dressed in strange attire.  It is an eerily spooky and deeply mystical procession, that entrances me every year.

In nearby Assisi there are of course many Easter processions, and services on the Sunday.  Assisi is especially worth visiting this year now that the new Pope has been elected and he has chosen the humble name of Francis.  From his Wikipedia biography I feel certain that he has chosen the name after St Francis of Assisi, who led a simple and honest life, and walked from Assisi to Gubbio to tame the wolf, I hear the new Pope prefers public transport to limousines, there are lots of great walks here in Umbria.  Last weekend I made contact with a guide called Mauro who will take guests into the fabulous Monte Cucco regional park, where he was born and grew up, for hiking, cycling, and even fly fishing- he is a qualified instructor, and down into the depths of the caves on Monte Cucco.  If that appeals do drop me a line for further details.

It absolutely staggered me this evening whilst checking Facebook (incidentally do please “LIKE” our facebook page “Bellaugello Gay Guest House”) that all the comments posted about the white smoke rising from the Sistine Chapel roof, and the likely choice of new Pope, then the heightened tension whilst waiting to the red curtains to be drawn dramatically back, were posted save one exception from a loving and proud mum… ‘Mum is it true that Berlusconi has just been named the new Pope?!’ by gay guys!  Now get that girlfriend!!  Not that any of them are religious, maybe closet religious, but not openly professing religion.  With hardly one exception neither are they pro-Catholic, or intend to be, so why the slavish interest and lavish comments?

Anyway Religion or no religion, belief or no belief, the last weekend of March is a splendid time to come and stay at Bellaugello Gay Bed and Breakfast, where you will always be assured of a warm welcome, cozy underfloor heating in the suites, a cheery fire in the dining room, and the warmth of the log burning sauna stove…  (oh dear does that last sentence sound a bit Dante ish?)

Email your booking request now to:   book@bellaugello.com