As Spring perfumes fill the air and a warm sun beckons, the temptation is too strong to resist. Surrounded by Nature is the biggest advantage of living in the country during 45 days of lockdown. Even more so when I am fortunate enough to live on the border of an enormous private property – Villa Bagnani. A noble Villa built around a watchtower considered to be from the Lombard period (8thC). Originally property of the Bagnani family it was sold over the centuries to various wealthy noble families, extending its territory which are now a mix of vineyards, olive groves, agricultural fields, woods and streams. Its territory branches out to other farmhouses still property of the Villa and housing many of its farm workers, and I have explored them all which makes for a very pleasant couple of hours hike.
Like Alice in Wonderland I felt I had stepped through the looking glass leaving quarantine and Corona virus far behind. The sensation was exhilarating and still is!
A mix or tractor trails, dirt roads, hiking paths, abundant wildflowers and no road blocks. I delicately tread my way through wild daisy patches thinking it a tragedy to have squashed even one. Wild boars had not treaded so lightly and left their imprints in their mud holes, one of which had dried up, while the other still had enough water to get a good slosh around.
While I have no real concern that I will see any boar at this time of day, I startle a ‘capriolo’ – bambi deer, with the white fluffy butt quietly grazing but which scampers quickly out of sight. Onto the dirt road I am more worried about the ‘Danger ferocious bull’ sign on a rickety fence with an enormous hole in it! Later I discover from locals that the bull has long since gone, together with the rest of the cattle which explains the empty cattle sheds further along.
Past the vineyards just starting to sprout, slowing winding my way to the chequered fields and the woods in the distance.
I continue up and down dale, trailing a quiet stream, enjoying the freshness of the woods and enticed by the side roads that branch to other farm houses, veggie patches and pig sties.
Lockdown isolation is a million miles away. A cheery wave to the tractor driver and today things almost seem back to normal. A good 10kms hike and not a foot outside Villa Bagnani‘s property safely protected in Nature’s wonderland – Spring in Tuscany, it could not get better than this!