orWine Tastings in the Comfort of you own villa or B&B while on holiday in Tuscany or Liguria

To book an informative and fun wine tasting whilst holidaying in Italy or arrange for a wild food walk in your area contact me on tuscanytipple at libero dot it or check out my Facebook page

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Sunday, 27 January 2008

Of Ants and Ivy

The weather really seems to be getting better again. Susan wasn’t feeling well yesterday, so we had a break, although the mercury climbed to a balmy 19 degrees. Today was a little cloudy, but still mild. So we went off to work on the land in Arcola. I cleared another terrace, 10 gone 6 to go, and Susan burned the cuttings. I uprooted most of the vines on the terrace, leaving just a few that aren’t getting in the way much anywhere, pruned the remaining ones as well as a pear tree, cut down the weeds on the fringes, weeded around the peas and dug over a bed for spring planting.

As you can see on the top picture, the pear tree is not looking too well. It’s been attacked by our twin problem threatening all our trees, termites and ivy. The ivy, if left unchecked, gives the termites and other ants shelter and however many you kill of the little blighters, there are always are more of them than there are of you. It’s like the old joke of the elephant treading on an ant heap. All the ants swarm up all over his body to attack him. The elephant shakes himself vigorously and all the ants fall off, except for one on the neck of the elephant. So all the other ants shout up: ‘Strangle him, Bob, strangle him!’ And the ivy grows faster than you can cut it down. The bottom picture is of the view from the top of the pear tree down to Susan stoking her fire.

And what about Susan’s battle with officialdom I hear you ask. Well of course she needed another document and I should have known: an Italian Identity Card. This is one of the easier documents to obtain in Italy though. You just turn up at the local council, hand over 3 photos and €5.42, and hey presto! So we’ve done this and have another go at the tax office tomorrow. Right, must do my homework for tomorrows lesson or I’ll be told off.

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