The weather wasn’t our best friend for our last full day in Calvi, but we made the best of it nonetheless!!
What we’ve discovered in our week here is that a) it’s windy, and b) it could be sunny in one village, and cloudy in another… or cloudy in the villages and fine on the coast. It’s just all over the map!!
But we can’t really complain…. we’ve had no rain, and it hasn’t been as overwhelmingly hot as we’d figured it would be. That being said, I could’ve done with another jumper and a pair of trousers for the windy evenings!!
It was a lazy morning (Liam is sleeping late most mornings, having been exhausted the day before!) and just before noon we headed up to the hilltop village of Pigna, which we missed on our tour of the artisan villages the other day. I’d read a fabulous review about a restaurant in the village, and that the village was central to the initiative to connect all the other villages in the artisinal touring (glass blowing, ceramics, jewelry, food and oils, etc…) Apparently each village is known for a particular craft or culinary specialty, and Pigna is the only village that has a shop that showcases a variety.
Pigna was small but charming. A bit of a wander in a couple of the local shops that showcase various products from local artists (and bought a new ceramic bowl for my morning cup of latte).
One of the most charming shops at the bottom of the village is called Scata Musica, and the artist, Marie-Clair Darneal, makes hand-tooled, hand-painted music boxes. They are pretty pricey, but adorable, and we chose a lovely snail music box for Scarlett’s birthday next month, and Liam chose a ladybird for himself. Both play the tune of the traditional Corsican lullaby: O Ciucciarella.
Lunch was, in my opinion, the best of the trip! A small family-run restaurant, that is also an arts centre and an inn. They not only grow a lot of the food they serve in their own gardens, but they also don’t import any foods from outside of Corsica. So you can be sure that everything you are eating is local and traditional.
We shared a few plates assorted with: corsican meats/charcuterie, cheeses, cantaloupe melon, pureed aubergine, olives, grilled peppers and grilled garden tomatoes, and a few generous slices of marinated carpaccio of swordfish — all enjoyed with a hearty, crusty bread. Liam ate everything except the olives, and we were mighty pleased at that!!
It was a light lunch (finally!) but absolutely perfect. Under the shade of an almond tree, with sweeping views over the valley and Algajola Bay. I could have spend the whole afternoon here… but we did promise Liam one more trip to the beach.
And so we headed back to Calvi beach… and it was WINDY!!! More so than the other days we were there, but it didn’t stop Liam from putting on his swimming costume and mucking about in the water and sand for a couple of hours. It did take him a bit longer to warm up afterwards though… and he asked if we could go back to Octopussy restaurant before heading home.
No problem dude!! A hot chocolate to warm him up from the inside, beer for daddy, and a wine for mumma! A nice way to end the afternoon.
Now back to packing our suitcases, we’re leaving the gite in the morning!
Yesterday must have been a good day, because THIS IS HOW TIRED HE WAS. Managed to keep him upright long enough to get some dinner in him....
Scata Musicale in Pigna -- hand made music boxes. Charming!
Liam chose a small 'coccinelle' (ladybird)
The artists workshop.
Views over the bay from Casa Musicale restaurant.
Liam and his new musicbox.
Liam sampled everything except the olives: he ate melon, potato, saucisson, cured hams, cheeses (he LOVES cheese), aubergine and a generous helping of 'carpaccio d'espadon' (thinly sliced, marinated raw swordfish)
Views from our table over the valley.
Liam playing silly monkey while we enjoy our after-lunch coffees.
Our table was in the shade of this almond tree....
Liam wants to drive us down to the beach...
Woohoo!! The beach again!! Chilly, but he doesn't seem to mind!
Mumma buries Liam in the sand, and turns him into a big fish!
Liam starts to destroy from the inside!!! Stop wiggling your toes!!