After the storm of yesterday we all awoke to a beautiful morning here in Umbria.  Overnight there was the first frost, the ground and terrace tables were all covered with a silky sheen of ice.   Fortunately I had managed to store all our wonderful geraniums and delicate plants.

Seen from the terrace at Bellaugello Gay Guest House mist hangs in the valley and the dusting of snow still clings to the Apennines it is utterly beautiful

The temperatures are certainly fresh, but the air is clean and crisp and the colours bright and intense.  Perhaps we will get an autumn after all

Only last week here at Bellaugello Gay Guest House near the sleepy but highly truffle scented and intensely beautiful medieval city of Gubbio we were basking in temperatures nearing 30˚c everyone was poolside topping up his tan.

And then came the rain and big winds.  Firstly the wind was southerly, warm and pleasant, and then it slowly turned into a biting north easterly.  The boiler was loaded up with wood cut from our estate, and on came the underfloor heating…. toasty warm feet in all the suites so cozy and comforting.

Guys headed for the sauna, and one brave guest even managed a couple of lengths in the pool the water now a blisteringly cold 14˚ yes honestly he was spotted by other guests on more than one occasion, brave guy! Sorry I do not have a pic for my ‘Bellaugello Backs’ series

Today again big winds, and rain, rain rain.  Now I am delighted to at last be having some rain here in Umbria.  We have seen so very little this year, and crops, plants, animals and humans alike are suffering, so rain is welcome, especially coming as it does, at the end of the season.  But I do have to ask why is it that after a storm and large rainfall does every leaf have to end up in the swimming pool for me to have to fish out!  But there was more….

Dramatic clouds draped the hills and mountains, fast moving stratus and big dumpy cumulus, and then lo and behold! when this afternoon the clouds lifted and the sun peeked through, the Apennines were dusted with SNOW!!!!

It seems we are to be deprived autumn and unlike the warmth of last year the upcoming olive harvest will be done in thermals and woolly hats and gloves.

Later this week I am heading off well wrapped up to the Gubbio Truffle fayre and Montone woodland fayre.  Both will be fun, sampling hot roasted chestnuts and bruschetta drizzled with truffle oil, and deciding black – white – summer which truffle to buy  which reminds me I must look out that Swedish Glog recipe for when we return to Bellaugello to serve hot in front of the blazing log fire in our dining room.

The SUN continues to shine here at Bellaugello Gay Guest House.  Once again yesterday it was 28˚c almost hot enough to brave the infinity pool, and the autumn colours are becoming quite spectacular. Here is the Caci tree, one of the last fruits of the season just ripening now

It is a time of tranquillity and silence, barely a rustle of leaves at night, and the mornings bright sunshine and mist in the valley below, a real time to recharge and revitalise, towns are quieter, autumn markets and fayres are starting, time to be thinking of cosy autumn breaks and crackling log fires

The sun has been shining brightly all day.  This morning the guys once again awoke as if in an airplane above the clouds as mist hang low in the Chiascio valley below Bellaugello Gay Guest House.

The sun has been really hot all day, still a day for perfecting that all over tan at the infinity swimming pool.  Now it is evening and fires are lit, wine corks are popping and conversation is flowing.

Inevitably turning to food we are all looking forward to the coming weeks, with the annual Truffle fair in Gubbio  over four days starting on 31st. October and the Woodland Food Fair in nearby Montone – yes that delightful town with the stunningly beautiful war memorial sculpture.  The fair is for four days and starts on 1st. November.

You will be able to sample chestnuts, mushrooms, truffles and a whole host of local delicacies.  Owing to a cancellation we have a couple of Suites available, so come on why not join us in these food extravaganzas? for booking.

Yes, I am still here.  I know I have not posted for some time, but I am still here!

There are several reasons, all of which are without excuse save one… and no this is not a rant!

I could claim that I have been too busy, I could claim that I have had writers’ block, I could claim that I have been doing other things, I could claim that I have been relaxing in the sun by our wonderful infinity pool here at Bellaugello Gay Guest House, I could claim that I have not been in the mood, all of which may well be true, but over the past five days I have been fighting with technology.  Firstly the internet connection has been spasmodic.  The weather here in Umbria has changed and we have had some fierce rain storms which have knocked out or slowed down to snails’ pace the internet that makes working online virtually impossible.

But the main reason is that my computer has taken onto itself to work when and how it pleases, not how I want it to be i.e. reliable and ever functioning. I have been unable to get a secure connection to many services I use including my internet banking account.  This scares me as I read of so many bugs and viruses in the computer systems these days.  I don’t know if it is my computer, the internet or the bank’s connection, however it just was not working. scary!

Today was a total techno breakdown:  Firstly early this morning no internet, secondly the slicer in the kitchen decided to break, so everything had to be done by hand.  Then trying to print a document, the printer would not because one, yes one of the two black ink cartridges was empty.  Did I have a spare at home? no of course not! (see previous rants about printer inks)  and the back up printer for which I bought a ‘generic’ ink cartridge refused to recognise the cartridge and so it would not print either.  As if those were not enough tribulations for one day to cap it all the POS credit card machine went on the blink.  It is displaying a message ‘broken – call technician’ so I did.  The telephone call went like this:

Please can you help me my credit card machine is displaying an error message that I require an engineer.

Have you tried un-plugging and re-plugging it in?

Yes, and it still displays the same message

Well you need an engineer to visit site

So how long will that take?

It will take a maximum of 12 hours from when he receives the job card

So when will he receive the job card?

Well I will send it to him today but I cannot tell you when he will read it

So in the meantime how do I process credit card payments ie departures and deposits?

“You don’t”


Gee thanks, welcome to my day!