A Visit from England

After our excursion westwards, we drop in on Luca and Laura for a day of work on the farm and some horse riding, and then we return to our lovely Passopomo via Catania Airport to pick up Adele and her daughter Maya who have come to visit us all the way from England. We’ve been on the road for 18 months and have repeatedly invited friends and family, but these two are the first ones who have braved the distance and the uncertainty of where we might be, where they might stay etc.
Maya is a keen rider, so we design our outings around riding times at the Maneggio. One morning, we drive up to the lava fields of Mount Etna and scramble around on them like goats. Talking of goats, Frank and Ruth have settled into their new home in Passopomo and are now able to roam freely while Rosi is there working with the horses. The tables have turned, and instead of being afraid of the dogs, the dogs are now afraid of the goats! Ruth has found out that she can chase Pongo and she’s successfully head-butted Nerino who, as a result, is now completely disinterested in them. However, when all five of the dogs have designs on them, it´s time to shepherd them back to the safety of their current pen (an empty horse-box).

After three days, we change location and take our visitors to Luca’s place near Cassibile, where the riding continues. Adele has rented a car, so we are also free to visit places that we haven’t been able to access with our Emma. We spend a lovely, sunny day descending to the lakes in the beautiful Cassibile gorge, even taking a swim in the cold, cold water, taking photos of goats and picking wild Carob pods – sustenance for the precipitous climb back to where we parked the car.
It is lovely to be able to share all these beautiful places with our friends from home, it makes a connection between our lives here and there. It is great to see Maya improving her riding daily, working up to a canter that is too fast for a photo!
Adele is a more cautious rider, but the lessons are tailored to each person´s level and need. At the end of the day, there’s a session of Equestrian Vaulting, starting from changing the way you face on the horse, ending with standing on the horse´s back.

We also go back to our lovely beach at Fontane Bianche, pleased to see that it is still clean and the sign is still in place. We have a lovely BBQ with fresh fish and a dip in the sea.

For more pictures, go to our flikr album

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