I've posted several suggestions to get the most out of your trip. I'll continue to post those...
For today, take a look at these simple suggestions...
Most of us already check street maps a few times before a
trip to make sure our hotel is close to downtown or a planned drive isn't too
long to do in a day -- but there are many more riches to be found if you spend
a little more time with a mapping app.
Before I fly into an airport, I check the route from the
airport (or the rental car garage) to my lodging.
Sure, you’ve probably read guide books. But, this can help
you gain appreciation and understanding of the various tourist landmarks you
might visit. That way they won’t seem like just another thing to gawk at and
Again, take a step beyond the guide book and check out some
I find it a good idea to learn several phrases.
Please, thank you, and hello go a long way. For me, I learn even more. I want
to be able to read the menu and street signs. If you can’t speak the language…at
bank to change your PIN and cancel and replace your ATM card.
credit card companies. You should be traveling with only one or two, but call
File a report
with the hotel where you’re staying, the local police, and anyone else your
You will need
to contact the DMV to replace your driver’s license when you return home.
You will need
to contact any insurance companies, if you carry those cards with you.
attention in the next few weeks to your bank statements, credit cards, and
anything else that doesn’t look right.
To back up a
few steps…what are some things you really don’t need in your wallet when you
Security card…leave it in a safe place at home.
cheats with PINs or passwords, especially for bank accounts.
a good idea.
card…after all, it has your Social Security number on it. Instead, make a copy,
block our several digits of your SSN, and keep that in your wallet. Hospitals
can look you up if they need to.
L’arte di mangiar bene, the art of
eating well, lies at the heart of the Italian lifestyle — and that’s just what
you’ll enjoy during this cookery week. You’ll learn the secrets of healthy
eating from The Watermill team, among them an Italian grandmother, an organic
farmer and our gardener’s wife! You’ll choose freshest local ingredients (many
from our own gardens) and prepare them deliciously. We’ll visit markets,
vegetable gardens, olive groves and vineyards.
The Italians are the healthiest people in Europe and this is
due not just the quality of the food, but tola bella vita italiana, the relaxed lifestyle
which means takingtime to talk to friends and to enjoy their
company, not least in convivial meals around the dining table. You’ll be
savouring all that, too.
You’ll stay in stylish bedrooms in elegant buildings around
the sunlit courtyard. The mill’s gardens, secluded millstream paths and
riverside walks are all yours to enjoy.
This is the art of eating – and living – well!
On this cookery course with a
difference, you’ll gain hands-on experience of cooking mouth-watering, healthy
Italian meals with the freshest ingredients. The emphasis will be on culinary
techniques that will help propel the healthy Italian lifestyle into your own
Our team is led by Lois Breckon,who has
masterminded the Watermill menus for many years, and her friend and
Fabbian, an expert on nutrition, as well on the preparation of
home-made pasta and bread. Our Italian experts include our cook, grandmother Mirella Musetti,
professional chef Angelina Benedetti, organic farmer Federica La Sala and
our gardener’s wife Marida Tognini.We will share their decades of culinary and horticultural
experience, based on knowledge passed through the generations of Italians.
Your hands-on cooking sessions and our daily demonstrations
will cover many aspects of the Italian and Tuscancucina,
from appetisers (antipasti)
to after-dinner biscuits (biscottini)
and much else in between; from pane to
pasta, through main courses, to
homemade puddings and ice cream.
There will also be trips out to markets and food producers, to an
ice-cream parlour and a hill-top gourmet restaurant, and a panigacci
evening (rounds of unleavened bread brought hot to your table and served with
local hams and cheeses.) So, as well as learning l’arte di mangiar bene you’ll also sample
the vita bella italiana.
Everything is included in
the cost of your coking at the watermill: all tuition, accommodation (including all
linen and towels), pre-dinner aperitifs, all meals and wines (including outings
to charming local restaurants) and all local transportation (including
transfers to Pisa airport and an excursion by train to Lucca or the Cinque
Terre). You get to Pisa, Italy, we do the rest!
for a fantastic cooking experience in Tuscany? Recently, I partnered with the
owners of Watermill at Posara, Tuscany. This unique setting is the ideal place
for their relaxing, inspiring, fun-filled painting
holidays and creative writing courses.
They also offer unique self-catering holiday accommodation in
three self-contained apartments. The mill has been beautifully restored and
furnished and all the bright, well decorated bedrooms enjoy lovely views over
the river, the gardens or the mountains.
Check out their beautiful and historic watermill beside the
River Rosaro in the small village of Posara. Peaceful and secluded, yet part of
the village, the mill is just a mile or so from the walled medieval town of
Fivizzano with its cafés, restaurants and shops. This is the heart of
Lunigiana, in the North-west of Tuscany.
Want a painting holiday? According to the owners, Lois and Bill
Breckon, their relaxing, inspiring and fun-filled painting courses with
hand-picked internationally renowned tutors are designed to help both
experienced painters and beginners to release their talent and most of all,
enjoy their painting.
“We offer courses in watercolours, oils, pastels, acrylics and
other media. The courses run from Saturday to Saturday and we usually spend the
first day or so painting around the mill, followed by excursions to the hills
(olive groves and mountain views), to the medieval walls of Fivizzano and the
castle and village of Verrucola for lots of en plein air experience.
There’s also a visit to the walled city of Lucca or the fishing villages of the
Maybe creative writing is what you’re looking for. “The
Watermill at Posara is the ideal place for an inspirational writing course. Set
in a beautiful valley in Lunigiana, Tuscany’s unspoilt corner, the mill
provides the perfect environment for focusing on your writing without the
distractions of everyday life. Our sympathetic tutors will share with you the
secrets of writing success and what publishers are looking for. And after a
hard day’s work you can slip into holiday mode with wonderful food, good
company and relaxing surroundings.
intimate creative writing courses (for 10 or so students) are designed to help
both enthusiastic beginners and more experienced writers. Your tutor will give
you a one-on-one tutorial during your stay as well as feedback on your work.”
Park Güell was commissioned by Eusebi Güell who wanted to
create a stylish park for Barcelona aristocracy. Check out the famous Gaudi
dragon fountain, all done in colored tile, at the entrance.
Meander through the walkway, supported by twisting rock pillars
that appear to be growing right out of the ground. Gaudi used nature in his
works and it is evident here.
At the top of the park is a terraced area where you can view
the entire park and Barcelona. Take some time to sit on one of the many
vibrant, multi-colored tiled mosaic seats. They look hard and not very
comfortable. But, the way they are constructed provides a delightful seat with
just the right amount of back support.
The park was built between 1900 and 1914 and officially
opened as a public park in 1926. Guell and Gaudi wanted this park within the
entire park to be for the group of homes surrounding it.