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  • Angela Louie and Allan de la Plante

Pitstop in Pitigliano

It was too far to make it to Venice in one shot so we had to make a pitstop in Pitigliano. It said it was a mountain village but we were on country roads for the last 50 km before our destination. There were even centre lines! There was no way we were on a mountain. But 100 m before our destination a medieval mountain village suddenly appeared, backing onto a cliff to the valley about 3 km below. What do you know…another medieval mountain village!

It was a nice little village, like a small version of Siena. The church bells didn’t ring as often but the garbage trucks and the crying babies seemed to follow us everywhere. I had caught a summer cold on the way so I was happy to rest and take it easy. There were some very cool (no pun intended) cellars and mountain caves. Everywhere there were stairs and hills (no elevators here). Even the seniors’ centre was up 2 flights of stairs. Just kidding. But I did wonder how anybody with mobility issues managed.

One interesting discovery was in the deli windows. They had wild boars and rats and mice in their displays. We even saw shanks of wild boar with the fur (or is it hair?) still on them. We were curious so we tried wild boar stew at dinner. It was the local specialty. It tasted like a gamier version of beef stew. Pretty good but probably not something I’d hunt for at the local Superstore.

Another interesting observation was a synagogue being guarded by the army. Apparently there had been threats made by extremists. Even in a small medieval village.

On a lighter note, we had an easy afternoon drive in the country to see some horses and came upon something I had never seen before…groves of olive trees. For a low-key pitstop, Pitigliano was more than we expected.

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