Up Lake Como without a plan

It started off as it often does with a vague idea to go off somewhere that ends up somewhere else which is always the best thing about it. On this day in particular, I wanted to explore the part of Lake Como between Como and Bellagio. The other side from Como leads up past Cernobbio … Continue reading Up Lake Como without a plan

Eating chisciöi above Lake Como

True to every stereotype, it's a beautiful Spring day up on Lake Como and I'm sitting on the sheltered terrace of Crotto di Biosio, feeling like I've hit the jackpot in some game called la dolce vita. Of course living in Italy isn't all dolce vita, by any means. My life is very probably your life, and the … Continue reading Eating chisciöi above Lake Como

Easter cakes in Lodi

The Agnello di Pasqua (Paschal Lamb or Easter Lamb) is a classic Easter cake from the Lodi area or the Lodigiana. It's made of flaky pastry and is usually filled with crema pasticciera (Italian custard). Variations are fillings of Chantilly cream or chocolate. At Pasticceria La Lombarda (the Lombard) in Lodi, they have been preparing cakes … Continue reading Easter cakes in Lodi

Montevecchia, the old hill

Montevecchia: ancient settlement of Neanderthal man and homo sapiens, amongst the oldest in Lombardy; Monte delle Vedette (literally, lookout hill) since Roman times; microclimate favourable to Mediterranean plants including rosemary; the wine of its vineyards, first cultivated by the Celts in 1 AD has been praised since the 1600s, and was celebrated by the Milanese … Continue reading Montevecchia, the old hill


"Go there today," the woman in the café tells me. "You don't get many days like today." "No?" I ask her. "Not up the Spluga. You probably get about five clear days every summer, really clear days." I'd set off that morning, passport at the ready, with the intention of going up the border into … Continue reading Montespluga

Down the Navigli

It was one of those rare days at the weekend where I found myself alone. Or rather I had to work and therefore I was alone. You can't really work with two kids with you unless it's  something family-based or child-based and in this case it wasn't. I was off to a café to write … Continue reading Down the Navigli

The Great British seaside

It's all about creating the memories. Usually, it's the North East coast: Whitby, Staithes and Sandsend, scene of many a childhood holiday. Last summer we had a day trip to Filey and Scarborough. Filey became a seaside resort during Victorian times and still retains a certain air of faded gentility in spite of the obligatory fish … Continue reading The Great British seaside