Experiencing my second wine festival was for lack of better words: great. Having Jordan around gave me a chance to really show someone from home all the wonderfulness I love about Italy. Jordan decided to drive a motorcycle from Rome to Cupramontana, which sounded like a great experience, but like all Italian travel experiences, it came with a few bumps in the road. Luckily, I think he is still having a great time.
Seeing the town full of so much life and excitement is something similar to the holidays and christmas in Seattle. While Seattle is a city always bustling with life (indoors) despite the overcast and rain, the holidays bring out a special spirit in people (in my opinion). Cupramontana becomes a whole new city during Sagra Dell’uva. The normally quite center with the same old men sitting outside of a bar playing cards, the regular servers at everyone’s favorite gelateria, and the farmers with their trucks, in a matter of days becomes a center of organized chaos. Food and drink stands come to life at night with everyone putting the finishing last touches to their stands, which includes placing individual grapes outlining a logo or slogan.
Dancing, music, and endless wine for four days has been chaotic but fun just the same. This year I attended a special tasting hosted by Corrado, which I have to say was probably my favorite part of the whole weekend. We tasted his Gli Eremi wine from 2000-2010. It was a special event that I was so happy to experience and photograph. I also made it to the fancy 2+ hour tastings that all the wine makers an wine journalists go to every year. I didn’t attend the first night, but made it to the second night.
I also met up with my lovely friends from Pesaro! I met Barbara and Daniele in Turkey when they came to stay at the Fairy Chimney Inn. We definitely hit it off and with a busy harvest this year we haven’t been able to make a trip out to see them in Pesaro. But Giovanni and I are hoping to go out there soon now that the harvest is finished. I took a break from the fancy wine tasting to join them for a drink and showing them around the festival. It’s always so wonderful to meet with new friends from all over the world.
Our first night we met a wonderful elderly Italian woman who couldn’t stop dancing. It didn’t surprise me when I found out she is the mother of the other dancer in town. Some people find him strange in a negative sense, but I adore him. He dances like no one is watching and ALWAYS has a smile on his face. He’s just out there having a good time, and I absolutely love it. I didn’t get a photo of him like I had wanted this year, but oh well. I did get a photo of another Italian man that caught my eye. Part of the strange band in the final parade playing a paint brush? I’m not sure what it was but he was looking straight into the camera and looked like nothing could ever stop him. He was wonderful. The parade was just plain wonderful.
The presentation of the floats was amazing. After seeing all the hard work these kids have put together, even I felt some kind of accomplishment seeing them in it’s final form and presentation. I woke up to the sound of a marching band outside my window this morning and it only brought a smile to my face. There is something about marching bands that make me all giddy inside. As I caught up breifly with my friend Marcela who is back home in LA, I thought of how ridiculously strange it must be when I was telling her what I was “up to” that day. Every day questions with unsual non-everyday responses. It’s still a nice reminder that my everyday life these days are the stories and experiences I had always dreamed about.