A Quiet Day in Barga?

Posted on: Sunday, June 10th, 2012
Posted in: Travelog, Blog | 4 comments

To paraphrase our good friend Garrison Keillor, “It’s been a pretty quiet day in Barga, Toscana.”  The sun rose early.  The stalls of the Saturday market were stocked and rigged.  And here and there, in the narrow sidestreets and jagged corners, a little action occurred, though most locals wouldn’t notice it.

  • Sabato market

We lived for months on these streets many moons ago, and the loud trucks made Saturday mornings restless, yet exhilarating.  Not much has changed.  The Rosticceria truck still has cranky ladies that make the best porketta ever.  Fresh seafood from Viareggio swims in.  And you can buy bras, shrooms, or socks.  Cheap, yet priceless.

  • First day of summer

Schoooooooooool’s out for summer!  Round here that seems to mean one thing mostly:  The water war that began yesterday on the last day of school continued all day today.  In the streets of Barga, NO ONE was safe.  Naturally, my kids got involved, and brought the game home to Sommocolonia. The upshot?  Everyone gets wet!

  • Gaggles of teens

God bless ‘em.  Those elder waterwar kids seem to be digitally free mostly, and prefer to hang out in large crowds til the last bus takes them home.  Today, they were noisy, obtrusive, obnoxious, and cute as kids can be.  Some of them took a fancy to my ‘Merrkun offspring.  Which is to say there was no stink-eye, only googlies.


  • Cast your cares…

The hot spot in Barga is Scacciaguai, which means “cast your cares to the wind,“ though we preferred to pronounce it Sacajawea, until we went there, and then we were just numb and happy.  Chestnut pasta?  Check.  Salmon in pastry with tomato pesto?  Si.  Tuscan sushi with risotto for rice and 6 kinds of seafood on one platter for 6 Euro?  Perfetto!  TripAdvisor:  Take note!

  • The cool pool

Ah, summer.  Barga knows how to make the most of it at their sparkling pool with mountain views, Prosecco on tap, and a staff that asks, “May I help you?” rather than, “Stop running or I call the cops!”  We can dump the kids there—and a soccer field, ping-pong table, and melone con proscuitto await.  (We’ll pick them up next Thursday.)

It’s too easy, sometimes, for those of us who love long-term travel to have our anticipation tempered by memories of concussions, train strikes, and mean-ass border police.  This time?  Piece of cake.  Or should I say dolce.

The Tuscans are still among the sweetest people on earth.  And for a short while, our job is to smile back and eat their cake.

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4 Responses to “A Quiet Day in Barga?”

  1. Sue Trowbridge Says:

    Thanks for the wonderful words! It sounds timeless in a way, and we identified with the noisy but wholesome kids. I wish we were there. I know this is a special time for special life-long memories all ’round!

  2. kirk Says:

    Gee thanks, Sue. We are indeed having a dreamy time–and will toast some rosso to you and yours. Thanks for tuning in!

  3. Balofi Says:

    breathe it in…..

    and remember.

  4. kirk Says:

    Ah yes, Balofi, along with a certain Sutherland Park, Key West bike ride, and 555 more…

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