Thursday, February 11, 2010

Today's Vacation

I heard that some people feel weary of the snow so I thought I'd take you on a virtual vacation. This summer, Karl and I visited an enchanting Bed and Breakfast. I know you'll love it.

We drove for hours to reach it and we only got a little bit lost thanks to my husband's talent for directions. He actually knows North, South, East and West by their scent or something, whereas I get lost coming out of an elevator.

What a relief to find it!

When I saw the blue gates I knew I would love it. My eyes swept over the roof line, the golden color of the stones, the net curtains in the windows, trying to take in all the beauty.

There were several buildings. Two of these stood opposite each other across a stone courtyard.
The one to the right with the big windows looked like the main house. Beyond this, up a hill or something was another building.

Our hostess met us in the courtyard. She was tiny, lively, around my age and kept looking up at my tall husband with a friendly spark in her eye.  With great excitement, as if she could barely wait to say so, she explained that when she got our e-mail making reservations, she very much wanted to meet us.  Her mother's maiden name was Nebbia!  We were cousins!  We were welcome to her home, formerly the village mill.

She took us through the courtyard, past the stone buildings and across a rapidly coursing stream
by way of a tiny, arched foot bridge (no railings!)

We followed her up to another ancient building re-imagined for guests
The huge exposed beams said that this building must been used when the mill was grinding grain. 

She invited us to explore the garden.  
I thought this would be a good idea. 
Was I ever wrong! 

It was the best idea ever! 

Details made it charming, hospitable.

She had placed a pitcher or watering can by each set of steps leading to the river. I suppose this was a way of watering the garden. I loved how the color of the pitcher complemented its surroundings.

See how swiftly the water runs!

She mixed textures in the flower beds.
She paired traditional with surprising

The structure of the garden helped create the enchanting atmosphere.
My imagination took it in like a cool drink on a hot day (or for those of you reading in February - like a hot drink on a frigid day).

The sound of the stream rushing by was like a familiar voice whispering in a way that sounded both truthful and exciting.  It reminded me of the stream in my home town where I'd wade all seasons. This ran too fast for wading, but it was clear and bending over it, I could see the sandy brown floor, the stones there.

 Breakfast was served in the mill itself.

Round tables, blue-green or white chairs, white dishes, yellow accents,handsewn decorations, homemade jam, a fig cake baked by our hostess, flowers and candlelight in the morning.  Cousins indeed, we were kindred spirits.

From our perch at this amazing place we were able to visit beautiful and meaningful places.

to dare

to sympathize

to learn

to talk and understand

to dream

to imagine

to return and create sanctuaries real and virtual

This is what vacations are meant to give us.  May today's adventure give you the refreshment your soul requires.


  1. This is beautiful! Pray tell, where is it? I would love to take David there on our Anniversary in May. Thank you for sharing your memories and your talent for painting a beautiful picture both through your words and photos! Crystal McKnew

  2. This was lovely I shall have to go to a bed and breakfast sometime other than the winter myself. I have had wonderful experiences with them but always chilly ones. Thank you for sharing yours.

  3. oh loris... thanks for today's vacation :)