Stories and Experiences

Photos and stories about people and places discovered on trips Home to Italy

How local Italians are working to improve the lives of dogs

In 2010 Fiona Cole and Carlo Cesario rescued Dino Fortunato in Calabria, Southern Italy and brought him home to California.   Following their story online at the time reminded me of the ‘local dogs’ I met during my 3 months in Sorrento, Italy In large Italian cities you may notice dogs with owners in tow, often breeds that may be considered ‘designer’ and you rarelyContinue reading “How local Italians are working to improve the lives of dogs”

Florence: Street Art

Street Art in Florence April 2021 | Lee Laurino A compact city known for renowned artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Michelangelo, Florence offers many famous paintings, frescos and sculptures in its countless churches, museums and palaces. However, less notable art also exists throughout the city. When exploring the cobbled streets of Florence, remember to look up to find some “quiet” art. While buddingContinue reading “Florence: Street Art”

Just released, an Italian vegetarian cookbook by Ylenia Sambatii

Italian cuisine may be one of the most popular in the USA and if you are part of an Italian family you have enjoyed traditional dishes as well as special treats on holidays.  Although fresh vegetables are a mainstay in Italian cooking, a vegetarian diet is now achievable with the new book by Ylenia Sambatti:    Italian, Simple Vegetarian.  A lifelong vegetarian, Yle says sheContinue reading “Just released, an Italian vegetarian cookbook by Ylenia Sambatii”

Made in Italy, a guide to artisans throughout Italy

Made in Italy, by Laura Morelli     We all may be arm-chair travelers this year, but we can still travel throughout Italy in the pages of Made in Italy.    Part Italian history lesson, part insider travel guide this compact volume takes your inside the towns and villages of Italy where traditional handmade traditions flourish. An award-winning author of Art-historical fiction and writerContinue reading “Made in Italy, a guide to artisans throughout Italy”

Museum of the Liberation of Rome

    Museo storico della Liberazione, Rome  another unique experience to discover- beyond the tourist sites. The museum recording the liberation of Rome from the Nazi occupation is housed in a non descript apartment building not far from the Basilica of St John Laterna. Here you will find records of the Italian Resistance in 1944 during the WWII German occupation of Rome 9/11/1943 toContinue reading “Museum of the Liberation of Rome”

Italy: closed for months but locals became very innovative!

         Italians Became Creative during the shut down Italians have stoically followed the directives of their regional governments to stay at home since early March and finally have started to return to what will become the new normal.   Some worker were able to tele-commute from home while  non-essential businesses, hotels, restaurants, cafes, museums, historic sites and even the Vatican closed.    Not aContinue reading “Italy: closed for months but locals became very innovative!”

Itailan Stories is bringing you chats with artisans in Italy A great way to pracitice your Italian!

Meet several Italian artisans though the efforts of Italian Stories.   You may want to practice your Italian at the same time! From tomorrow 18 April until 24 April we will be live instagram on the profile of Italian Stories, entering the laboratories of 7 amazing artisans who will tell you the secrets, peculiarity and difficulties but above all the beauty of their I work. Continue reading “Itailan Stories is bringing you chats with artisans in Italy A great way to pracitice your Italian!”

Venice: roof top views

Exploring Italian cities, villages and fortified towns     Walking the lanes and streets of charming Italian villages or the larger avenues of major Italian cities, I can experience Italian lifestyle from ground level.  To appreciate the scope of the city and the surrounding countryside you must climb.     While Italian towns usually have a major church, some include a bell tower, other towns may have theContinue reading “Venice: roof top views”

"If you want to know a city book a local with Prontopia"*

Venice   Rome   Florence If you are visiting for the first time,  an independent traveler or returning often, Prontopia can simplify your travel   Use Prontopia to book a local to help eliminate some of the stress of travel Arriving in a new city where you do not speak the language and signs may not always include a translation, can be exhilarating as well asContinue reading “"If you want to know a city book a local with Prontopia"*”

Art in the Cemetery of the Holy Gate in Florence, Italy

With a zoom lens you can view the Duomo in Florence Cemetery of the Holy GateLocated next to the church San Miniato al Monte. Italy is packed with art and the city of Florence, Italy is no exception.    Major museums display and protect some of the most famous paintings, tapestries and sculpture.   Sculptures can be found outside of formal institutions.     You canContinue reading “Art in the Cemetery of the Holy Gate in Florence, Italy”

Italian stone angels, Rome

Italy is known for outstanding museums           where art treasures are on display You can find incredible marble carvings in museums, public plazas and even private homes and courtyards.  But have you searched for other incredible carvings in the cemetery? Entrance to the Rome English cemetery in Rome A view of the Piramide from the cemetery.  Only a few blocks from theContinue reading “Italian stone angels, Rome”

Just saw this online.  I have heard locals in Venice talk for years about the problems with tourist and particularly the ones that come for the day or on a monster ship.   Now they have one solution, perhaps…… from Conde Nast Traveler From April 28 to May 1, one of the biggest Italian holiday weekends of the year, tourists will be restricted fromContinue reading

Italian contacts are like beads on a necklace ………………

 My Italian beads These are NOT the beautiful beads you find in Venice! Many people collect beads as a reminder of a place they visited, a special event or something they are fond of. I think of the wonderful Italians I meet in Italy or follow on line as my beads of Italy.    Many of my contacts in Italy have become friends.   Americans make ‘friends’Continue reading “Italian contacts are like beads on a necklace ………………”

Rome: Paint and Sketch in a Roman Park with artist Kelly Medford

Rome:  Art in the Park with Kelly Medford Several years ago I spent 2 days following Kelly while she painted in Rome.   She was gracious to allow me to shadow her while she completed a project of painting a picture every day!  see post at  Rome Italy through the eyes of a talented American artist. I had an opportunity to join one of Kelly’sContinue reading “Rome: Paint and Sketch in a Roman Park with artist Kelly Medford”

Sicily: Opera dei Pupi: an Italian tradition you can still find

    Hundreds of eyes followed me as I explored the Museum di Pupi  (Antonio Pasqualino International Puppet Museum) in Palermo Italy. An army of soldiers away the next battle In 2008 The Unesco intangible heritage list of cultural traditions in danger of extinction, included the Opera dei Pupi, Sicilian puppet theatre.  Always searching for anything in Italy not listed in a tour book, Italian puppets of Sicily wereContinue reading “Sicily: Opera dei Pupi: an Italian tradition you can still find”

Another opportunity to renovate a home in an Italian village Ever dreamed of owning a home in a pretty Italian village? The news you’ve been waiting for has finally arrived. You can now buy one for just over a dollar.   Ollolai, a destination in the mountain region of Barbagia on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia, is selling hundreds of abandoned homes for justContinue reading

Florence: the children’s home Ospedale degli Innocenti

More of the renovation has been completed 5/1/2017  Florence, Italy Ospedale degli Innocenti: the hospital of the innocents Walking through the Piazza Santissima Annunziata as an exchange student many years ago, the imposing building on the east side of the piazza was never open, but it has proudly kept its long history of service to children.   For the past year+ scaffolding and plastic sheathing has promised a renovation that willContinue reading “Florence: the children’s home Ospedale degli Innocenti”


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