Bellaugello is an official nominee for the 2017 Gay Travel Awards! To win I need your vote.  Have you enjoyed your stay at Bellaugello, have your friends enjoyed their stay or have they been told of your vacation here?  Please share this post and vote now.


By voting you have the chance to win a Gay Travel goody bag of Andrew Christian underwear and of course the knowledge that you have raised Bellaugello’s chances of winning for which I thank you. And now enjoy my blog post about Bellaugello nomination.

If you want only happy positive news jump to paragraph five, meanwhile if you are in a mood for a dithering rant here is mine.  Just what is happening?  Some days its all so horrid I am terrified to turn on the radio or look at social media, the news and posts are just so violent and angry  The reported world is in a very bad place and daily this hatred amplifies, and I find myself almost crying in exasperation.  Natural events, earthquakes, hurricanes, volcanoes, storms, insane heat, drought, is also as if the world is responding to humanity’s aggression in its own way and showing us the folly of our destructive ways.  I ask myself how did we get to this stage and will the ball of intolerance and hatred continue to spin and grow.  I yearn for good news.

Where to listen, where and what to read, and in posting this I ask myself if am I adding to the spinning ball…  America depresses me, a country that thinks of itself as ‘right’ is now so ‘wrong’, the decisions made in recent days showing increasing intolerance and a very scary belligerence and the terrifying control that the multi-nationals have over global decision making, with so many other countries freekishly, blindly and slavishly aspiring to be American.  Taxes, social mobility, disenfranchisement, embassies, travel rights, tolerance, Guns, the right to carry guns, well let’s not go there.  I cannot begin to believe the logic of guns or that after yet another tragic killing it will ‘all be all right’ because ‘we will pray for you’ is anything but insane claptrap by a bunch of very very nasty people.  Indeed some four weeks ago the hunters here murdered my delightful Clara the tame fox that had learnt to trust me, the team and so many of my guests.  I am still so angry and hurt and know this knowledge will bring a tear to more than a few of Bellaugello’s guests.  Brexit (not that I’m admitting to how I voted) a decision arguably admiral in concept, aiming to withdraw one nations influence over others is clearly an unplanned farce. If only Noël Coward, Oscar Wilde or Gilbert and Sullivan were still alive can you imagine the satire, the hilarity and raucous laughter that would be generated on stage.  Sadly the farce of Brexit is becoming violent with a small group of sectarian politicians now wielding huge amounts of power and aiming to divide a country and take it back to war.

Poland and Hungary seem to be lurching catatonically to the right, their rulers ever more intolerant and xenophobic, whipping into a frenzy so many people who march so aggressively.  The culling by a young prince of rulers in Saudi already a country which exemplifies intolerance, but to to whose tune is the young prince dancing?  The ostracism of Iran, the cradle of the world’s cuisine.  Regime change in Zimbabwe that is probably not regime change.. give the guy another ten million dollars to go…. The ever increasing deforestation of the Amazon basin, the destructive march of genetically modified crops, oh yes, as if there was ever any doubt Putin intends to stand again.  So his, and the church’s institutionalised homophobic aggression will escalate.  Putin has banned Monsanto OGM in Russia, a move I thought good until I realised the motive, Russia must be working on its own OGM production, there is always a political motive for a move but why this homophobia, why?

Even in a country as liberal and progressive as the Netherlands guys tell me that it is not as easy to be openly gay as it was a few years ago.  Yes huge congratulations are due to Austria and Australia on passing same sex marriage laws Bravi! and wasn’t it wonderful to see during the vote the Australian politician asking his fellow politician boyfriend to marry him, a real tear jerker. Sadly, simultaneously there is increasingly in the world, an acceptance of institutional homophobia.  Only to read that Chris Johnston the reporter of the “Daily Blade”  one of America’s leading LGBTQ paper was, for the first time in seven years not invited to the President’s Christmas party, gives the level of institutional homophobia is reaching and being encouraged to grow and disseminate.  So much of sub Saharan Africa is fiercely homophobic, ah yes they were ‘civilised by the faithful’.  Liberties do not exist, in so many countries to be gay, is a death sentence.  I am genuinely scared not only for the present, but for future freedom, human rights and specifically rights of gay and transgender people.  Not that I hide my head under the haystack, but the tranquillity and beauty I find here on my Umbrian hillside is one of the reasons why I love being a ‘contadino’ or ‘peasant farmer’ living in Umbria, Italy.  It is bliss.  Bellaugello Gay Guest House is a haven, here it is truly special, you find peace, it is a place far away from the madding crowd to recharge and to inspire you.

My email has been playing up, my computer decides autonomously what it is, and is not going to do and whether or not the wifi will connect, (just how do you work on a computer with only wifi connection that refuses to connect?).  At the same time emails arrive, or, remain in the ether, the mail programme regularly freezes and Firefox scarpers from the screen seemingly going on holiday.  In that I have no idea what will happen pressing a computer key is always exciting.  Fans whirr, programmes and apps often do not load correctly, freeze or worse still crash and sometimes, just sometimes they load.  One email that did get through yesterday was it was a lovely one from Gay Travel informing me that thanks to you guys Bellaugello Gay Guest House has been nominated for Best Bed and Breakfast 2017.  I feel so very happy and proud we (yes my team are a huge part of Bellaugello) have received the nomination, , to know so concretely that we are doing something right.  We are one of six nominees, and with your help we can win.

Gay Travel Award Nominee Letter 2017