|Day at the Beach|
As the colors changed all around the Val d'Orcia from bright green to pale wheat and golden browns, the air has become stiflingly hot.
With the exception of an occasional cool breeze at night and the noon time gusts of wind that rattle through the village there is not much movement, tourist or otherwise.
A break from the hills was foremost on the agenda as we packed a light lunch and two beach towels and headed west towards the Tyrrhanian Sea. From Montalcino down to Grossetto is a winding if scenic route to the Autostrada at Paganico. Unfortunately as often happens I got stuck with the signage and instead of making to the sea in an hour and a half, it took a bit longer. It took us quite a while to find a parking place close enough to the beach and after winding around the streets for another frustrating half hour I finally found a little space by the side of a shady road on Via Giglio, which synchronistically as always, means 'Lily'.
We headed straight ahead to the water and found a typical beach set up with the umbrella's and beds to rent for the day at 20 Euro at the Bagno Medusa. I have to mention as an aside that I was a spectacle with all the Italian ladies looking with horrific fascination at my tattoo art.
We all pretended I didn't really have a tattoo the size of Montana on my arm which obviously would have prevented me from being a capable, loving, decent mother to my very beautiful and normal daughter.
Eventually Ani and I pieced a story together about the Medusa, a string of Moon Pearls and the Snake that dances it's way through the hair of my girl tattoo. We were most certainly sent on a secret mission by the Gods of Olympus to enlighten the subjects at the Medusa enclave.
It was a beautiful day of firsts for both of us. Ani had never actually been swimming in a large body of water. Oh yes, the Pacific and the Atlantic, but both were either too cold and treacherous for the currents or some other thing prevented a good swim. At Castiglione della Pescaia we swam all day long, lounged in the water, fished in the sand for clams (none) and got our first, good sunburn.
Although we brought sandwiches for lunch, the menu at Bagno Medusa
was really appealing and we kept our sandwiches for afternoon snacks and ate a lovely Riso Mare (with fresh fish) and a Insalata di Mare with squid and octopus pieces in oil.
Our plan is to do this as many times as possible all summer long, sans sunburn.