Memories

While, after having exited the Florence/Siena motorway at Colle Val d’Elsa, the car enters into an ever more virgin landscape, unbeknownst to me, and it was one curve after another, and the crossroads followed one after another and the roads we went down became narrower and more deserted, it reminded me of Tom Thumb and his brothers (…).

How could it be(…) that this, our extraordinary country still today, preserves in the heart of one of its most apparently well-known and celebrated regions, such wild places, so tucked away and thus, unknown, like those that—now fallen silent in awe—I was traversing (…). Then all at once, there was a row of lindens and finally, an ancient washing trough, beacons that there had been a time when human beings, beside myself, had traversed these secluded vestiges of an Italy that had escaped the avid 20th-century man.

The castle's light, strong walls, deeply marked by time, led the way through the vegetation and a steep cobblestone road from a few centuries ago showed us where to go.

A row of rundown huts leaning on the outcropping rock concealed—as we went up to the castle—the enormous precipice that just a few moments later would leave us breathless.

There, where the calcareous cliffs sustain the castle, the lanner falcon and peregrine falcon, sparrowhawk, owls and barn owls, the kestrel and the buzzard fly and nest, we felt as if we were flying, too, and dominating, filling our lungs with air, a harsh and infinite landscape etched out at our feet like an echo between valleys; in the complete silence you can only make out the sound of a hundred small torrents that run among the white pointy rocks in which the grottos inhabited by a rare species of bat open up.

The castle has been there for a thousand years; it grits its teeth, cries for help, loses pieces, but still holds up (…). Reaching this place, by chance like me, from the faraway wetlands of Adda, is a married couple with their children; they fell deeply in love with its history, its obstinance, its severe humanity. 

Dr. Marco Magnifico.

Vice Executive Chairman FAI – Fondo Ambiente Italiano (Italian National Trust)

 

Hunting in Fosini was wonderful and those memories make me happy

The first memories of Fosini go back to 1955. I went to Fosini with my friend Saverio Bulgarini d’Elci whose family had the property of the farm in Montingegnoli which is near Fosini. Those days our passion was hunting, that's why we often went to this wonderful estate, which is Fosini because it was a special area made for that purpose, and rich with game, famous at the time. To me going there was like a dream because of how beautiful the places were, and because of the castle, and it had an extraordinary charm on those rocks, over those precipitous gorges. Well, we always lingered there, perhaps to have a bite to eat. And then, behind the castle there were the Cornate di Gerfalco, a 1,100-metre mountain. I remember once I went to the peak of this mountain and from the peak I could even see the sea.

Piero Antinori

  The parties at Fosini were the most beautiful in the world

But for the parties, I went more for the area of Fosini than of Anqua because you couldn't find girls as beautiful as the ones in Fosini anywhere else. No doubt about it.
At Fosini there was dancing. At Serraglio there was a little man named Sandro; since he was so small we called him Sandrino; he had just one boy and six or seven girls from fourteen to 24 years old and they all lived there.
Those days on Sundays you took your bike and went to Fosini on the look out for young girls. Of course, you couldn't go to Florence on a bicycle; we hung around our area. But in Fosini the girls were really pretty. They were at Casino, at Casetta, at Meluzzo and on various other estates.
So that's what you did, not just in Fosini but in all the places in the area. You went to the "boss" of an estate and you said: listen, you gonna make us dance tonight? Or tomorrow, second choice. If they said no, you went to another with the same request to have a dance in their home. They were all houses with bumpy floors but all we cared about was getting together. When they told us yes, you had to make sure that the guy with the harmonica came; you went around the estates to invite the girls and then you danced until midnight, one o'clock and then went home. You spent one hundred liras per person to organize everything, and only the young men paid, of which there were usually ten. That money went to pay the person that played the music and we had money left over to have the housewife boil two dozen eggs.
In fact, when you got there at midnight, it might happen that you would ask the housewife, the lady of the household, if she would boil a couple dozen eggs; you ate this egg and then went home. Sometimes I went to bed at three, three-thirty, it depends how far I had to walk to go home. You had a good time because there were lots of young people.

Amedeo Cambi