Today I give everyone a free day to sleep in, explore the area on their own, relax by the fire or by the pool depending on the weather, or set the house on fire…. More to come on that in a bit.
Isabel and I slept in and then I got up and fixed coffee and worked on my blogs. Today, Isabel and I planned to escape from the group and go visit Il Falconerie – a beautiful villa and garden now a hotel no restaurant near Cortona. This is always a great day as I get a chance to see who my adventurers are as everyone has their own car everyone can set their own itinerary for the day.
Matt and Jennifer Gage got the award for being the most adventurous as they chose to head to the Amalfi Coast a day early! Tim and Amber went exploring in Umbria and hit some of the off-the-beaten-path villages. The Giltners and Leagues slept in and then we're going to head to Lake Trasemino for lunch. Rebecca and Martha slept in.
I then received a call from Phyllis saying she really wanted to go back and see the doors we had seen on Wednesday at Porte del Passato and firm up her order for her home in Desert Mountain. Everyone was still asleep so I told Phyllis is would run her over and we would do our best to get back so I could have my romantic getaway with my Isabel at Il Falconerie.
Phyllis drove and I navigated back to Porte del Passato which is about 45 minutes away. We met again with Gabriele and went through the plans for by door and revising the samples and finishes. In the course of doing this my cell phone starts lighting up with texts no calls! The first message I get is “smoke is coming out of the walls we think the house is on fire!” Obviously that caught my attention! Phyllis wondered why I wasn’t focused? I said, “Something is going on at the house – it sounds serious!”
Apparently, Doray had her suite to herself, as Phyllis was with me, so she made a fire in the lower level fireplace and went off for a bath. The Leagues and Giltners were upstairs having their morning coffee when the smoke started pouring from e walls. The Giltners called me and Isabel who was up in our house. She rushed down, Steve rushed down to get Doray out of her bath…. Still haven't heard all the details on that part of the story…. And we contacted Elizabeth who manages the homes to let her know she better call the fire department.
It seems they came quickly as Phyllis and I hastened our time at Porte del Passato and rushed home. Before we could make it back, the fire department had determined that perhaps a nest or creosote had clogged the flue pipe and trapped the smoke. The firemen checked everything out and gave the all clear and the excitement of the day and trip was behind us wi no one and the houses no worse for the wear!
Isabel, Rebecca and Martha decided to make it a girls day so they went off to Il Falconerie and I returned to Mark Yearwood who had slept in and missed all the excitement and all of the various day trips so he was stuck with me! I had left my sport coat on the wine bus so I needed to make arrangements to rendezvous with Pino Near Cortona so The two Marcos headed to Cortona forlate lunch.
Of course we hit Cortona around 3pm me everything was closed for siesta but we were fortunate to find a restaurant open of the side piazza that t first blush didn’t appear as much until she started taking the two of us further and fired down until we entered a spectacular cellar with no one there but the two of us. The Marcos would have “Man’s” lunch! And how do you start that but with a good glass of San Giovese and the wild game platter! We had a fantastic lunch while the ladies dined at Il Falconeire.
A quick cappuccino in Cortona and then a quick rendezvous with Pino for my jacket and it was time to head by, to the farmhouses for our Umbria farewell dinner!
Our farewell dinner in Umbria marks the end of the tour where we really tour as a group. We just spend the day exploring on our own and it really acts as a natural Segway to the rest of our trip where we really become our own couple again and transition back home to the U.S.
Tim got the grill going, everyone emptied their kitchens for a giant Umbrian Potluck Supper! It's really nice to enjoy one more sunset on the porch, and dine together asfamily. We shared stories from our day and our explorations and shared how we all ended up on this trip. Our time in Umbria had come to a close.