Debra Prinzing

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What can we learn from a classic Tuscan garden?

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009
The stone steps of La Foce's terraced garden draw the eye upward, towards two large Italian cypresses

The stone steps of La Foce's terraced garden draw the eye upward, towards two large Italian cypresses

I’ve barely been home from Italy for 24 hours and despite jet lag, I am still alert enough to post my first report about the two week trip to Tuscany.

One of the most memorable days was our tour of La Foce, a Tuscan estate and garden with influences dating to the 15th century when the property was built as an Inn (“Osteria”) by the Hospital of S. Maria della Scala.  It is located in the town of Chianciano, about 30 minutes southeast of where we stayed in Montisi.

“Foce” (pronounced Foe-CHAY) means “opening” or “meeting place,” and its origins are traced to the Etruscans. The name refers to the osteria’s location as a stopping place where two prominent roads intersect. The roads were traveled by pilgrims, merchants and travelers who sought rest from their journeys at La Foce.


Off to Italy for my Tuscan Adventure

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

”]The garden terrace at Villa Maddalena [BillWright photo]Two years in the planning, I’m leaving tonight to fly to Rome (via Munich) for a two-week Italy getaway. Ten of my dearest friends are joining me in a little village called Montisi, which is (happily) in the middle of nowhere. We are ostensibly celebrating my belated 50th birthday, but I also think we’re just celebrating life. Each other’s and the beautiful friends who, sadly, couldn’t be with us this time around.

Hey – there’s always my 55th, right?

After my girlfriend week, I will have a family week. My husband and 2 sons arrive as the girls leave. Plus, some dear college friends of Bruce’s and my folks. Celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary, too. Lots to be grateful for. And I hope this trip slows me down long enough to ponder that.
Slide show of Villa Maddalena, our home away from home for 2 weeks. Photographs by Bill Wright. Yes, THE Bill Wright!

Here’s one more shot of the Villa, taken from a hot air balloon:

Here it is, our stone villa

Here it is, our stone villa