Writing The Stonecutter’s Aria was a door that opened up many opportunities for me. Over the past thirteen years, since its publication, I have been led to create writing workshops and programs to inspire people to preserve their family stories and rituals. It also led me to design excursions to Tuscany twice a year, opening the doors to its life-changing beauty.
I am often asked when I might write another book. A sequel to The Stonecutter’s Aria or perhaps a recipe book? Good ideas, but I could not seem to get these off the ground. I have been waiting for the right time, the right idea.
During these same years, I have been living part-time in Tuscany and these experiences deepened my knowledge, awareness and appreciation for its gifts. I have cultivated wonderful relationships, encountering marvelous places, which I share with the people who come with me on my excursions. I am happy to share the abundance of the Italian table, harvest, art, history, music and my friendships firsthand.
The book I am creating represents the past seventeen years of my life in Tuscany. It will be un collezione, a collection, of my stories, insights, soulful travel tips, fabulous photography and yes, some recipes – a window into life in Tuscany that will be both beautiful and practical.
My vision for the book is three-fold: a deluxe, sumptuous edition to grace your coffee table, a premium soft cover edition for readability and a pocket-size Travel Guide that you can download.
I am happily writing the book now and it is possible it will be published in time for the holidays, 2018!
No title yet. (The Stonecutter’s Aria came to me two weeks before publication while I was attending an opera!). So, I know it will emerge at the right time.
So, what do you think? Comments and encouragement are welcome!
Have you ever traveled to a new place and been taken around by a friend who lives there? Someone who knows where to go to buy things, where to eat, where to see the beauty? That’s what we do. Coming with me to Tuscany feels like that. You can relax into la dolce vita and that’s the reason you would go in the first place, yes?
What are your travel plans for this year and into next? If Tuscany is on your “must see” list, there are no better times to go than Spring and Fall and in my not so humble opinion, there is no better way to experience this fabulous destination than to join one of my trips.
There is a reason why people who come once, come again with me. Why? It is not what we do, so much as how we do it and how people feel about the experiences: nurturing souls and stomachs, allowing beautiful moments to create lifetime memories.
Someone said, “Italy is a dream that keeps returning for the rest of your life.” It’s true. If Tuscany is your dream, like it is mine, come this year or next – with me. It will pay dividends for the rest of your life.
The Fall trip is $6,900 per person and includes absolutely everything except airfare. Yes, it’s expensive, but in order to create these experiences for only 6-10 people….. to accommodate the shifting euro/dollar exchange rate…..to make donations to arts organizations so that we can have access to special places and know that we are helping to restore priceless works, like a Michelangelo drawing, or Puccini’s historic home……to hire chefs to come in to our Villa and prepare special meals…..to travel in a luxurious van with a driver, you will not find another “tour” that matches the excellence for the same price.
The less costly alternatives are to go on your own that often results in wasted time figuring out how to navigate Italy, find the best places, account for time getting lost, frustrated, disappointed or misunderstood (which is not necessarily a minus if you have lots and lots of time over there but if you have only a week or ten days, do you really want to rely on Trip Advisor or spend hours renting a car and driving around in circles to find your way to the Chianti?)
OR you can go with a large group on a big bus, be herded in and out of museums, so-so restaurants and getting up super early every day - and miss out on special experiences because it is not possible to bring 25 or 50 people into private residences or small venues, which is where the special experiences happen.
When you come with me, an hour after you land at the Florence airport, we will have you comfortably ensconced in our Villa, having a glass of wine or a massage.
October 20 – 27, 2018 – Four spots are available.
Early April 2019 – exact dates TBD soon.
Or here’s an idea – put a group of 8 – 10 of your friends or family together and choose a week that works for you! I will do my best to accommodate.