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Wine and Baby Gesu.

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Here you are this morning with me at “Bar il Duomo”  – the coffee shop right next door to our house and just steps away from the cathedral, or duomo, here in our adopted hometown of Arezzo – hence the bar’s name.  I have just ordered a macchiato and Lucia is getting ready to make it.  She always looks like this.  Beautiful and smiling!

She and her husband run the place – alongside their son Andrea and his adorable girlfriend Francesca.  It’s a real family affair.

And speaking of family – look closely at that gourd- looking blue thing in the foreground on the right.  It’s not a gourd at all  – it’s a demigiana – a container used to make wine.  And inside it resides the Holy Family!

Oh little town of Bethlehem - inside a wine container!

Oh little town of Bethlehem – inside a wine container!

That’s right! A miniature Madonna, Giuseppe and Bambino Gesu – aka Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus – plus assorted sheep, pine cones and an angel – are all delicately arranged inside this wine-diorama.

Naturally, with the Holy See and the Pope residing in Rome- it’s no surprise that Italy would be renowned for its creative nativity scenes, or presepi, as they’re referred to in Italian.  When we were in Paris last Christmas, for example, the elaborate nativity scene, or creche, as they’re referred to in French – we saw inside Notre Dame was made by an Italian, not a Frenchman.

But to see one in miniature carefully arranged inside an old wine bottle – now that is truly awesome!!

Buone Feste, tutti!

Baci, Gina

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