Sunday, April 21, 2019

A Good Friday in Bellagio With Pacio and His Gang

Friday, 19 April, 2019

The simple plan for the day was to drive along the picturesque western shoreline of the Lago di Lecco to the Lago di Como's wondrous city of Bellagio to visit our friends Pacio and Teresa.

A map of the Lago di Como and
Lago di Lecco region

Pacio and Teresa run a GREAT
woodworking business and sell their
wares right on the Lago di Como shoreline
in Bellagio near the ferry boat landing

They had bottles of ice cold Prosecco waiting for us to share at their place of business but heavy traffic on many of the roads on this Good Friday made us late to the party. 
No traffic on this stretch of narrow
country road that offered . . .

. . . INCREDIBLE views of
Lago di Lecco . . .

. . . and the snow topped Alps

Michael in Bellagio

We scored a parking spot only 200 meters from Pacio's woodworking stand! Believe me, that is no easy task ever in tourist filled Bellagio.

When we finally arrived, we found out that Pacio and Teresa were now at the restaurant where we had previously planned to have lunch, so . . .

. . . we started walking the
mean streets of Bellagio

Michael nearing the top of
Bellagio's pedestrian only area

Tempting but no, we had to get
to our lunch spot

Getting closer


Pacio and I deep into a discussion on nuclear fission vs. nuclear fusion, if I recall correctly.

Now THAT'S a meat and cheese
plate with some style

We were joined at lunch by two former Italian football greats.

Fabio Franzini, seen here sitting next to Teresa, was Pacio's partner in mayhem as a Defensive Lineman back in the day. He has lost 100 pounds since retiring from the game but looks like he is still good for a series or two of goal line defensive plays.

Also joining us for lunch was former Offensive Tackle Fabio Tesolin who could also line up for the attacking team if there was a goal line offense need for a huge blocker to punch in a needed TD. We'll see this Fabio in photos in just a bit.

Interestingly, the two Fabios have been fast friends since kindergarten.

After another fabulous risotto meal accompanied by several bottles of wine, we went for a walk in Bellagio's prime shopping area which, amazingly enough . . .

. . . had a church
which we entered

The Chiesa San Giacomo
was ready for Easter Sunday

I'm into Baptismal fonts

This business sign was hand carved
by Pacio as are many others in Bellagio

Our traveling group of six
in a market

Front Row: Teresa

Second Row: Pacio, Michael and George

Back Row: DL Fabio and OL Fabio

During lunch Pacio had commented that DL Fabio had amazing strength while playing the game.

His signature move, known simply as "The Franzini" in Italian American football lore, was to hold off the Tackle with his left hand and the Guard with his right hand and then head butt the running back to end the play.

Is that possible? Is that legal?

Michael just had to try "The Franzini" one time!

Yes indeed, it CAN be done!

Offensive Tackle Fabio Tesolin was warded off by Michael's left hand.

Pacio, filling in at Guard, was similarly dispatched with Michael's right hand.

The head butt to Running Back stand-in Fabio Franzini WORKED!

We have got to bring this technique back to America!

We will have to show it to the Chicago Bears coaching staff when they work our Venom American Football Camp in Varese this coming June.

The shopping continues

Michael bought several items
from Pacio and Teresa's stand

Pacio and Michael with Bellagio
behind them in the distance

Fabio, Pacio, George, Michael and Fabio

Sometimes I feel like I'm a Medium.

We now headed on to Pacio and Teresa's Zia Agusta's farm.

Zia is Italian for aunt.

An Italian farm just has
to have chickens, right?

This stone barn was
constructed in 1860

They had pigs

Inside the nearly 160 year old barn

What is that hanging from the ceiling?

Interesting, cob webs?

Dairy cows

Is that half of a handle bar mustache
atop this cow's head?

The view from the barn

Got to have an anvil on a farm!

Farm utensils as art

Zia Agusta, on the right, holding court

The view from Pacio and Teresa's
new home which they are renovating
with plans to move in next Spring

At this point we bid farewell to the two Fabios who had provided us with so much mirth today and continued on with Pacio and Teresa to a spectacular viewpoint over looking the Lago di Lecco.

See what I mean

A statue dedicated to
local motorcyclists

Nice helmet

An Alpini was also standing watch
over the Lago di Lecco

One more view of the Lago di Lecco
before we headed on to . . .

. . . the wine cellar of a monastery built
in the 1500s that sported an interesting
wooden shoe

Even in the 15o0s, Italians had a flair for shoe fashions.

I wonder if Pacio could make me a pair of these shoes?

Of course he could, he is Pacio after all!

Pacio's cousin is working on restoring an apartment in this former monastery. The apartment upstairs was small but with lots of potential.

Three old wine barrels

How old are these dusty wine bottles?

Fascinating but we moved on to our final stop of the day, Pacio's Laboratory as he calls it.

Woodworking Heaven

Of course there was wine involved
in our Laboratory Tour

The Italians custom is to drink wine from a shared bowl.

When in Bellagio . . .

The wine was good but the
friendship today was

What a life!

OK, OK Pacio you are right,
nuclear fusion IS the way of the future

After some fond farewells, we headed back to Varese full of lots of great memories of our day in Bellagio with great friends.

Driving home via the eastern shore
of the Lago di Como


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