Going to Gorgona – words

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I got there in the end, in a Polizia Penitenzaria launch. There were about 15 of us altogether, mostly friends and relatives of the wardens going to enjoy a weekend of r&r. From a distance, Gorgona looks a typical small … Continued

Further Food for Fort

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There’s nothing remotely dainty, subtle or elegant about Livornesi food. Take today’s lunch at La Vecchia Ciurma, which describes itself as a Restaurant Wine Bar, quite funky as well as retro, as it turned out. The photo above is of … Continued

Vulgar, rowdy, leftist, etc etc

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According to my good friend, John Irving, The Sage of Bra, whose guiding hand is behind where I stay and where I eat, and most of the steps between, the character of the Livornesi is ‘vulgar, rowdy, fiercely leftist, violently … Continued

Visiting Tobias

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I went to visit Tobias Smollett in the Old Protestant Cemetery in Largo Ing.Guido Donegani just off the via G. Verdi. It should be a melancholy place. Certainly it’s unloved, untended, overgrown and locked away from any would-be visiter. As … Continued

Day One: Tales of the Unexpected

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Well, this is rather new for all of us. A first day, a first blog, a first view, perhaps. So far this trip has not been without its problems, to put it mildly. If I ever thought that a summer … Continued

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