Monday, May 15, 2017

The Death of Allergy Season in Northern Italy

Pollen Makers of Rovinj, Croatia
It’s almost over!  Sufferers are rejoicing, and I am one of them.  Allergy Season is a real killer for me, and I am so glad to be able to breathe again like normal.  I only have a slight irritation in my eyes, something I can live with in comparison to the one week where I was coughing, wheezing, and unable to sleep well.  In the city of Padova there are quite a few cotton wood trees still dumping their cotton, but in my village there are only a few.  The mayor elected to cut most of them two years ago, and he was planning to replant with something else less harmful to allergies.  However, he lost the election and the new mayor (Sindico) has decided to keep costs down and not replant trees.  

This past weekend we spent a 3 day weekend in Croatia on the coast.  Their were some yellow flowers that were a small problem, and, of course, the pollen from the evergreen trees.  A big help was the thunderstorm that blew through the first night cleaning the air, making it crisp and clear.   There is nothing like listening to thunder in the night and knowing that the air will be clean in the morning.

Rovinj is a town not to be missed if you are ever on the Italian side of Croatia.  You can walk through the town and discover the shops, the small walkways and the big church on the top of the hill.  Almost completely  circled by the sea, it feels as if Rovinj is on an island.  It makes it a special place to visit.

 One of the benefits of living near Venice is that you can reach by car Croatia, Slovenia and Austria in a few hours.   Croatia gives us a nice change of cuisine from Italian.  Along the road, with the windows down, you will smell the big barbeques of the restaurants that are roasting whole pigs outdoors, as if to advertise their establishment.  But there is more!  This is truffle heaven.  You will encounter some great sauces with truffels, and some great pastas, too.  They make the most out of this being a zone for truffles.

Smoked Bass Mousse.................Tuna Tartar 
We made a great discovery reading  from TripAdvisor, finding a special restaurant with the name of  Barba Danilo, in a campground at the edge of Rovinj.  I did not believe that an eatery existed in a campground, but they made a believer out of me.   I took a chance on a mousse created with smoked bass.  Looking at it, it looks like a big tube of white cheese. This became my number one item of the weekend.  There were other specialties, so many that you have to make a second visit, which we will do in a few weeks. 
(Translation of Barba Danilo is beard of Danilo.  I am not sure that is what the owner intended, but maybe he has a sense of humor?) 

May can be a great month to visit Italy.  Here, the weather is changing to the good after only one week of rain and cloudy skies.  The lizards are back out in the sun after sleeping all of last week.  It will be 78 degrees most of this week.    The grapes are looking real healthy with lots of leaves, and northern Italy is covered with many shades of green with the trees and the farmer’s plantings.  We will have some thunder storms in the late evenings, but nothing major as we stride into summer.

A Sketch on an Abandoned Home Outside of
Chania, 11 X 15 Inches
This will be used for a half sheet painting later
I am not writing the blog as often as I did in the winter because I am spending time painting watercolors.  After a full week in Chania, Crete painting watercolors, I am now motivated to devoting more time painting.  I am thinking of having an exhibit in the September or October.  Finding a good place for an exhibit will be difficult.  Like anyone, I need to set a goal and keep at it.    It has been too long since the last exhibition.  

Ciao, Dave

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey David,
In Veneto dialect, 'barba' has also another meaning: 'zio' - uncle.
Danilo is an Italian name, or at least is seems. Not quite common in Veneto though.
So "Barba Danilo" could be just a "surname name" or maybe "uncle Danilo" ;)