A few years back, I purchased an auctioned vacation to Sicily for my self and my Mom. It was her dream come true...to return her father's ashes to his homeland. We stayed at the joyful Villa Ducale. We didn't know at the time that she had cancer. I must tell you the sparkle in her eyes never left her even at the last moment of her life.Her final thirst was quenchedbya pungentItalian lemon ice. The most unforgettable moment was when we found a little private isolated bench behind the Museum of Sicily. We plucked a couple of tangerines from a tree overhead and sat eating them while watching the plume rise from Mount Aetna. Little feral kittenspeeked atus from the tall grass as we basked in the loving Sicilian sunshine. She turned to me with a look of bliss and stated simply, "This is the happiest day of my life..."
My fiance and I are leaving for a motorcycle tour from Rome to Siciliy soon. We have already been in touch with the friends my Mom and I made during our trip. They are overjoyed that I will be returning, as they have never forgotten us. Thank you, Luxury Link, for helping me to find "family" andsome of thedeepest joy.
I only found this communicationpage because I'm searching your site for yet another incredible adventure!
I must say that yourpost has touched megreatly. A few years agowe celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary, and decided to spend it in Sicily. I was looking for a magical place and found it in Villa Ducale.In a thread that I started"Let's help LL recruit new properties" I explained that while we werethere we suggested LL to the manager. Next thing you know they were at auction. Some contributors asked if I got compensated for the referral. Besides getting a beautiful e-mail from Andrea the owner, no I didn't...until now.This is a great reward, knowing that you had those special memories with yourMom.I would like to encourage anyone to put in a good word for LL, if your are at a property that fills therequirements of LL. The rewards will follow.
Thanks for being the adventure shaman that you are. I must tell you another sweet anecdote about that trip. When we arrived in Sicily, The temperature became unseansonably warm for them and every where we went, they were all so happy in their short-sleeved shirts. The Villa Ducale provided us with a driver who was a delightful and funny grad student. When he took us up Mt. Aetna, he showed us the ski area which had been melted into the lava. Alas, he explained, there is no more snow on the mountain and there was drought. My Mom and I told him that Giuseppe, my Mom's dad, was truly an angel and he'd been giving us the most terrific of surprises every day. We said that if he asked Giuseppe for something he would probably get it, because our Nono was elated to be home.
The day we left, we were halfway to the airport. Suddenly, the temperature droppednearly 30 degrees! The bus had to stop and we all pulled out sweaters, etc., to keep warm. Everyone was truly puzzled. When we finally got back to ths States, our phone rang. It was the folks from Villa Ducale exclaiming that ourNono must be some kind of angel because it finally snowed on Aetna and the mountaintop was covered! There hadn't been any snow for the last 3 years! They laughingly said they were going to start saying little prayers to him when they needed something. How funny is that...but after we put some of his ashes in the earth at the base of a laurel tree that was old and small, within one year, it had grown over 6 feet! Now, I'm really not certain what to think of him. But I will always recall him lulling me off to sleep as a child by playing his beautiful pearl-inlaid mandolin and singing softly...my angel.
Also, when my Mom and I walked down to the market from Villa Ducale, the first shop we entered was a tiny fruit and vegetable store. The man told us everyone called him "Joe Bananas". That was the name of my grandfather's best friend as an adolescent! Because of that we were gifted with the biggest chedro (football-sized lemon) that we had ever seen. My grandfather had spoken of them often and we had never believed that lemons were that big. Well, there it was, right off the bat on our first day...
I tell EVERYONE I can about LL and will continue to support them. What a gift! Healer