This past weekend we went to visit our friends in Montepiano (provincia di Prato), a small town high above the Val Bisenzio in Tuscany. On a tiny lake, shady, and full of flowers, Montepiano is a lovely place to retreat to during the hot summer. On Saturday morning, we took a walk to La Badia, a much restored thousand-year old abbey church. I sat outside on a bench next to a pile of pine cones someone left there and drew the facade. In the afternoon, we returned to La Badia to attend the baptism of Zoe, niece of our friend's boyfriend. After the service, we walked through the village to a the home of one of the baby's relatives, where we ate marvelous Tuscan food in their garden. On Sunday afternoon, we drove to a meadow on a mountain to see our friends' bees. They recently took a class in apicultura and have established their hives. They have just harvested their first honey (miele d'acacia). I picked the wildflower in their meadow shown on the right side of the drawing, but drew it back at their house. I am quite allergic to bee stings, and was a bit nervous to be there, but had no problem.
I am at the very end of my drawing book. We returned to Venice yesterday around noon. I stopped at my bookbinder to inquire whether he had finished binding more paper for me, but the new book is not ready yet.