Every once in a while I go through some old Italy pictures. Yearnings to hit the road follow soon after. A recent memorable trip to the Abruzzo brought back these yearnings.
The very name “Abruzzo” has the feelings of wildness to it. It is a place too remote to have fallen into the the magical and refined grace-pit of the Renaissance. Tourists are few. There wasn’t enough wealth in the churches for the Renaissance they crave. Instead, locals clung to the land, listening to the pulsations of life in the wild as if their lives depended upon it, because, well, it did.
Pagans. Pagans are the much-maligned people who rely on the profound depth of their understanding of the dirt, the animals, the skies and how they interact, crafting from this immense knowledge the closely-held traditions of isolated farmers and herders—and exposed in festivals, superstitions, lively song and dance. These are the celebrations you must come to see.
It’s not that pagans are “against” God. He just has better things to do, loftier things.
So, potential tourist, walk among the places you see in these pictures. Even on a bright, sunny, spring day you can feel the earth cracking and surging, surrounding the new birth that pushes away the rotting old; April is the cruelest month…
Read more on Castelvecchio Calvisio
Find out more about ancient Peltuinum.
This is the area of the Abruzzo that these pictures were taken. Wander it. Explore it. You’ll come away changed. In a good way, of course.
Also to See in the Map Area
We stayed at a restored fortified monastery near the town of Ocre called Monastero Fortezza di Santo Spirito. A stay is highly recommended; all the pictures here (and hundreds of others) were taken on day trips from this place.
Grotta di Stiffe is one of Italy’s top caves to visit. A river runs through it.