Some drawings from our little guests. We love them!
Night neighbors in Doderi.
Wild boars and other wild animals are often around the garden in Doderi to eat the fruit fallen from the trees.
Thanks to our guest Thomas for this picture!
This was a movie from 1991. I don't remember the movie itself, now. I thought it was a good title for this blog post.
In 2014 I was living in Florence and my boyfriend, Francesco, lived in Chicago. The cities, our working schedules, the things to do were killing us. We were looking for a place to stay together - any quiet place in the World.
The opportunity to live and work in Barbialla Nuova fell in our hands and we decided that this was the answer to our dreams and needs. Just me, you and the cows, a hundred of angel-like cows spotting the green pastures with their white hair. Ready? Set. Go.
What did we know about the countryside? The things we had learned when we were children and we spent our summers in our grandparents' homes. Nothing, I would say now.
Barbialla Nuova is an awesome place. Everywhere you are, you're surrounded by fields, hills and calanchi. The nearest groups of houses are far away from the farm. Only tractors and light wires remind you that you are not in the middle age. In Barbialla you can walk five minutes, sit on the deck and be part of the lake life, with frogs and fish jumping all around you and the swallows flying down on the surface to drink. Silence is deafening and the stars are big, too numerous to count.
Did you ever see a white poplar blooming? A zucchini plant growing up so fast that you can actually see it growing? Did you ever eat sun-ripened tomatoes straight from their plant? Pick-up blackberries as big as walnuts, smelled the scent of the just-picked hay, or a white truffle from the dirt of the woods? Walk in the moonlight or experienced the dark, the real one? This is the part of this experience that I already knew, the one I was looking for, that nourished me everyday for five years.
And then the rest comes. I did not expect it, at all: I thought I would have worked and enjoyed the rest of the time surrounded by beauty. City slicker.
Land gives, land takes. You have to plant the veggie garden and water it every day, cut the grass, feed the chickens and clean their coop, not be too friendly with the cows because you’ll be sad when they leave, mix life and work, work and life, until you realize that the limit is so fleeting that it is just a wall that you built in your head. You have to welcome and adapt to the others, take care of their needs, give yourself as a present, but not too much, try to define the limit - the limit, again, maybe life is also working on limits? You have to manage, organize, wait, hold off your sense of responsibility and your control mania, remember that beyond the to-do-list, there are trees and flowers and beauty.
And then you take the rhythm, you ride it, you almost dance with it. You feel that you have arrived at that precise point, that you gave a lot and you got even more, you feel that the person that you were is no more there, there's another one now, forged by life and by Barbialla, and so you're ready to come back to the world, to live a new great adventure which will bring you somewhere you can't imagine, again.
I thank all the people that shared this adventure with me: Guido, Tina and their children, Antonio, Frank, Zuma and Francesca, Toni, Debora, Sara, Mariateresa, Angela, Enrica, Colombo, Silvia, Martin, Alain and Arianna, Simone and Simone, Christian, Kyre and Ivano, Luca by A Terra, Luciano and Officinalia's team, the team of Zefiro, Raffaella, Simone and Francesco by Desinare, the Bar Alberi, Gerardo, Mike and Steph, and all “my” guests.
And now good luck to Jill & Jason and their family, who just started their adventure in Barbialla.
Last April, we had the opportunity to welcome two awesome travel bloggers: https://aforeignerabroad.com. Meeting Lindsay and Alexis left us the feeling that we really have no excuse: every goal is possible, when you want to achieve it.
That's the (amazing) result of their visit:
Thank you from the heart, aforeigner.abroad and good luck with your project. <3
Great news arrived with the new year!
Fattoria Barbialla Nuova won the Runner Up 2018 guest award issued by our partner i-escape. Thanks to all the guests helping us performing better and better.
This is a show we see every morning, and it never gets old. Zorba, the youngest cat to the right, scares every one away from him when it’s breakfast time: what a little stout-hearted fellow!
Truffle season is open, and we are not wasting any time. The first hunt with our guests produced a good amount of truffles, which suggests we are going to find even more in October and November.
If you would like to experience hunting for this most precious mushroom, contact us!
One of the full-mirror carps that populate our pond. Nice catch Joseph!
A very old terracotta jar sits at the gate of Le Trosce. Its still presence under a sky of rolling clouds in a sunny day is a perfect contrast between past and present. Small things like this make life at the farm a constant aesthetic experience.
....no?....try looking at this "Saturnia del pero" upside down...
If you are an early bird you could catch Frank feeding the calves in the morning. These big, white, cute Chianina cows are a staple for Tuscany.
We know that in Barbialla you can get easily distracted; wild boars, deer, porcupines, hedgehogs, and whatnot keep showing up and being attention magnets, caring little for our safety. However, it doesn't matter if you are driving, biking, walking, or crawling....always mind the ditch!!
Francesco took this picture in May, as he was working on one of the antennas that keep the internet connection up and running. It was a cool, sunny day, and the silence was absolute. This land has the power of reconnecting you to your peaceful inner self in an instant.
Blooming bushes, perfect blue sky, green grass, cool breeze.....too bad all the sleeping is making Pino the Cat really tired.
Yes, exactly. Because the color of this flower carpet at Le Trosce surprises us every year with new shades of itself.
Summer in Barbialla means many things, but one of them is certainly jam! After two very dry years, we finally had the perfect spring, and the fruit trees and bushes are loaded with yummy produce. Ilaria is not wasting time transforming them into delicious spreads. Here is a strawberry-lemon in the making...
The once-in-10-year snowstorm that passed over the farm last winter claimed a victim: the straw cover of the pergola of the swimming pool in Brentina collapsed under the weight. We just re-built a new cover and the pergola is ready to shade you from the bright sun of Tuscany. Thanks Marco for your help and company!
The new shack that hosts water tank and pumps at Il Poggio is finished. The wood is treated at high pressure to ensure the structure will last 10+years.