It's all about the book promotion these days....and that means communication with you, our readers. For those of you who have written back to us, we thank you for your interest and support. For those of you who have been to Salento recently, we would love to hear your comments about your trip experiences and whether you found our book helpful or not. As we all know, things change, so any updates regarding travel notes in our book would be gratefully appreciated.
We were in Otranto this year (2017) from the middle of June to the middle of July. The weather was good and our swims in the Otranto Bay were fantastic with clear and often calm (no wind) waters. We even joined some friends and hiked down a small cliff to a picturesque and isolated cove south of Otranto. It was a bit dicey getting back out onto the rocks, but we made it.
The little tourist shop on the corner outside our apartment was no longer. Gigi and Rosaria have retired. Our two favorite eating places, Il Ghiottone and Il Castello are doing well. The best pasta and mussels in my opinion are at Il Ghiottone; add a seafood antipasta and a bottle of susumaniello wine and savor it all. Sergio thanked us for mentioning susumaniello wine in our book....he says that he knows which customers have read the book when they ask for it, since it has only recently become more popular with local Italians. Il Castello owners Roberto and Maria and family continue to welcome everyone with good local dishes and pizza. We've learned over the years that this is a good restaurant to start a conversation with a neighboring table, so don't be shy.
For the first time this year we noticed African refugees who appear to have chosen Otranto as their home base and not move on further north like so many others. They are more out and about in town, some at work in small stores. For the first time I saw African children swimming and playing in the water. Older teenagers played vigorous games of volleyball on a small section of the town's beach. Later in our trip we visited the towns of Riace and Badolato in Calabria, towns known for their acceptance and accommodation of numerous refugees from war torn areas of Africa and the Middle East.
Check in soon for more about our summer adventures in Salento.
Coming up in future blog posts::
*a rock concert for over 60"s....Lucio Dalla and 90's nostalgia
*a fabulous cooking school in Lecce in an old palazzo: The Awaiting Table
*a side trip to Calabria: it's closer than you think