Sori seems to be the hardest word

There are some nights you just don’t want to end. You’ve been there … the stars all line up … it’s balmy and you’re outside … everyone is in excellent form … the food is good … there’s wine … there’s conversation … there might be dancing … and slowly the night wraps its arms around you with such warmth and contentment … you just want to stay there forever.

Our friends Louise and Paolo texted yesterday and said they’d been under the bridge and up the hill in Recco for the 10/10 focaccia col formagio and had taken a walk into the hills above Portofino.

And her thoughts turned to Liguria.

Of welcomes and lunches and fresh buffalo mozzarella …

fresh buffalo mozzarella

Of home cooked pasta and vineyards, of family and summer colour…

all the good things

Of feeling safe in the company of old friends …


Of laughter and coffee, too many morning pastries at the ‘office’  and the day to day nonsense that comes with living with these boys of ours …

so much fun

Of an Italian sidewalk showdown with an unsuspecting ‘orange bastard’. “You want a piece of me!!”

another orange bastard

And a final drive on a final night, into the high hills of Liguria at sunset, the car a little quieter than usual.

liguria at sunset

About 15kms east of Genova (just before Recco) take a left towards Sori and follow the road to the Chiesa di Sant’ Apollinare, perched on high above the Italian Riviera. It’s yet another of Louise and Paolo’s special places.

chiesa di sant'apollinare sori

That’s Punta Chiappa out on the point beyond Camogli … and Portofino is tucked around the corner on the far side of the headland. But here, the cicadas are in full voice and the olive trees are taking a breather after the heat of the day. And us, well we’re just drinking in the moment ..

chiesa di sant'apollinare sori

To dinner… vai vai vai (go go go) !  A short drive inland to the next ridge, to the Trattoria da Armando in San Bartolomeo. Park the car. Up a hidden path. Another place we would never find on our own.

walking-to-Trattoria da Armando

But before we step into the restaurant, we hear music. We’re curious. Another stroll a little further up the hill and we step into a Saturday night street party, cooked by the locals, common at this time in many villages. How can you not fall in love with Italy! ( 20 seconds hurriedly caught on the iPhone)

Back to da Armando. Local specialities. Local ingredients. Local traditions. I’ve learnt that the Genovese don’t care what their food looks like. It’s all about the taste.


Lingering …

A special favour asked …

“Paolo would you drive us to Portofino? Steve’s never seen it at nighttime?”

Draw it out … draw the night out … don’t break the spell.

portafino boats

A spell that was first cast on a boat in Split … and wove its way around the islands of Croatia, through the bicycled streets of Padova, the oak forests of Piedmonte and the turquoise waters and steep hillsides of Liguria.


Yes indeed …. there are some nights you just don’t want to end …

Thankyou Harrie and Vicky for having us on the boat. Thankyou Sue whose friendship led the way. To Paolo and Louise … nobody knows Liguria like you guys – molto molto grazie once again.

To anyone thinking of visiting this part of the world this is where you’ll find them. Louise is originally from Sydney but has lived in Italy for over 30 years…

Forest View Bed and Breakfast, about half an hour north of Genova.

And now, it’s back to reality.  So hope you enjoyed the ride xxxx

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    1. Seana
      Posted 11 December 2015 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

      Fantastico! We used to catch trains into the countryside around Genova at weekends. And eat. Sigh!

      • Marg
        Posted 11 December 2015 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        Hope it brought some of it back Seana. How long were you there for? For work? There are worse places 🙂

    2. Posted 11 December 2015 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

      You can really feel the happiness and love and warmth of your time with your friends. 🙂 How wonderful.

      • Marg
        Posted 16 December 2015 at 11:17 am | Permalink

        Yeah. Special times Krista. xx

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