I’ve meant to blog everyday, but I’ve caught the Italian malaise of doing everything slower than anticipated.

A typical day in the countryside is wake up whenever, eat apricots and yogurt and double espressos out of thimble-sized cups, visit a neighboring town, then siesta from 1-4pm when the entire country shuts down. Around 5pm, shop owners begin to pry open their heavy shutters, waiters throw white tablecloths on tables, and people emerge into the dusk bright eyed and ready for a long evening of eating, drinking, talking.

Two days ago, we hiked around a beautiful waterfall, then ate lunch by a lake. I ordered a whole lake trout and it came charred with just lemon and crusty basil. Delicious. Then the power went out. Just happens sometimes, no biggie. It was time for the four hour siesta anyway.

That night, our hosts told us about a neighboring village’s festival. There are about 700 festivals in the province, all celebrating some kind of food and raising money for the town. Colicello, they said, had one of the best. We found our way to a tiny hamlet with a church, a tennis court (our dance floor for the night), and vendors selling barbie balloons, pistachios, and jewelry. We put our name on a list at the entrance tent and about 45 minutes were eating some of the best food we’d ever had: spicy wild boar, polenta, fried risotto, charred sausage, Fava beans with sage, pappardelle with fresh tomatoes. And Umbian red wine. Then Elly and I danced the polka to accordian music.

Here are photos from the above. It’s too hard to do captions from my phone, but hopefully you can piece them together.