Villa Fortuna: An Italian Interlude

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9781864366044: Villa Fortuna: An Italian Interlude

"And when my back could stand no more, I would straighten up, lean on the fork and look across the fields of sunflowers through the heat haze to one of the most beautiful views in Italy--to the island of Polvese seemingly floating on the waters of Lake Trasimeno."

Leaving the standard comforts of life in Australia to buy the abandoned farm of the last contadino of Varacca, in Italy, Geoffrey Luck determined not to become a romantic Italophile abroad, but to live the real life of a rural Italian.

Putting down new roots in a tiny Umbrian village, surrounded by a peaceful landscape of silvery olives and golden barley, he restores the ruined farmhouse, turns the overgrown land into a productive olive grove, and explores the essence of what it means to be an Italian. Battling against the strangling tentacles of Italian bureaucracy at every stage, he encounters and embraces the culture, charm and history of Italy--from Etruscan bronzes to Lamborghini tractors. The place becomes Villa Fortuna--the house of luck. From this vantage, thoroughly immersed in the community, he turns a unique Australian eye on the complexity, the contradictions, and the long history of Italy, and goes beyond all stereotypes.

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About the Author:

After 26 years in journalism, in which he broadcast the news to outback Queensland, trained the first indigenous journalists in Papua New Guinea, dodged petrol bombs in Northern Ireland and reported on Australian business, Geoffrey Luck spent more than a decade in the clandestine world of headhunting. Italy beckoned as a quiet retirement, but over the next ten years he founded an olive grove, restored a derelict casa and found some of the best human interest stories of his career. As an ABC radio correspondent, he broadcast regularly on Italy for national radio, and especially for Italian Australians.

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