Return To Umbria 2012

We’re back in Umbria, and after just a few days the place is starting to look like home again. After shutting everything up for the winter, it takes a few days to air out, clean the floors and windows, and basically make the farmhouse feel like it is once again our home. We’ve already picked up our three chickens from our Italian friend who had taken care of them for the winter while we were away, and although we lost one during the very hard Umbrian winter they had this year, we’ve adopted a new one that is slowly but surely getting used to her new home. Our hens have already started laying three eggs a day, so they must be all settling in okay.

The first week or two back in Umbria are always busy as we have to get the utilities checked out, the landscape cleaned up, the pool opened, and flowers planted in pots all across the property. In between workmen at the house this week though, we’ve managed to visit a couple of our favorite local markets, and even went to see the Torchlight Parade in Canilicchio di Collazzone on May 1st for our first time. This is an ancient procession where handmade torches are cut from trees and are lit on fire and carried over the shoulders from the small church in the hamlet all along the road down the hill. It really was quite a an amazing vision to see, although more than a little dangerous, as pieces of burning wood kept falling off the torches all along the way lighting up the road all along the hill.

The weather has been nice since we’ve been back in Umbria, with mid-day temperatures in the mid to high 70’s although the mornings and evenings are cool. We have a month before our first guests arrive at our farmhouse rental Il Casale di Mele, and we plan on doing some redecorating in each of the three bedrooms. We will also soon be planting our vegetable garden or orto, which will keep us busy throughout our season here in Umbria, and supply us with lots of fresh vegetables to use in my recipes and for preserving.

It is wonderful to be back “home” in Umbria and I plan on taking a number of videos to share of our property and the region of Umbria throughout our time here soon as soon as we get settled. Living 6 months a year in Umbria is truly a blessing, and for folks who love to cook and enjoy great food like we do, a daily inspiration. Bella Umbria has so much to offer and I hope more folks plan visit so they too can enjoy our amazing region.

Il Casale di Mele Farmhouse Rental

Deborah Mele
May 2012

Il Casale di Mele Farmhouse Rental


Our Three Chickens Are Back Home!


View From Our Property Looking Towards Perugia


Our Artichoke Plants Growing Like Weeds


The Hamlet of Canalicchio di Collazzone


The Torches Ready For Lighting


The Lighting Of The Torches


The Torch Walkers Descending The Hill



  1. Hi, Deborah, welcome back to Italy. Nicholas and I were there for the month of May – Roma, Sinalunga, Lucca, Fiesole, Venezia, and back to Roma. Thought of you and Louis often. The procession must have been wonderful to witness. Stay well.

  2. As I sit here in SW Florida I can only imagine how beautiful your Umbria season is. It is very hot and humid here and I have spent a Sunday afternoon reading your recipes and looking forward to baking your bread when the weather gets cooler

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