This week on Thursday’s Travels is Zoppola. Here is a snip-bit of a small town in northern Italy where my Nonu grew up.
It’s hard to believe that it has been almost a year since going to Europe last summer. One of the highlights of my trip was going to my grandfather’s hometown, Zoppola, a small town in northern Italy. I have heard countless stories of my grandfather’s town and the antics he and his friends would get into. My sister and I were there for about a week and it was hard to say goodbye at the end of it.
This picture was taken at my grandfather’s cousin’s house. I was still trying to get a hang of taking pictures at sunset with my camera. The colors of the sky were beautiful. Below is a picture of a fountain at their house. The town gets fresh water from the mountain that flows to the river near by. The water streams into the fountain all day long and it was the best water I have ever tasted, no exaggeration. My grandfather’s house had one as well, but when the property got sold, they closed the water source.
This is a picture of the house. My sister and I stayed in a hotel down the street but came here each day to eat with our family. The house is considered the “old house” where my grandfather’s cousin grew up and my grandfather spent a lot of time. The front house is now the “new house” which is more modern.
This is the back of my grandfather’s house. They used to have a big piece of property that was a farm. When my mom was two, she spent time here with my grandmother and there are pictures of her with chickens and other animals. They also used to have a big barn that was full of hay. Ever since I could remember the stories about my grandfather, I wanted to come see his house and get inside. When my sister and I came to the back of the house, I was itching to get inside but I also had a big lump in my throat. I could not believe I was standing here after years of waiting to get to this point.
A lot of the windows are bordered up BUT as you can see, the door to the balcony was open. I pointed this out to my sister saying that we were meant to go inside because that door was open. So, delicate, innocent me went plowing throw the thorn bushes and weeds to the back door, which was also open. When I got into the entry way, my legs were scratched up but it was beyond worth it. I was finally standing in my grandfather’s house, or so I thought…
Those doors that are covered by these massive wooden beams are the actual doors to my grandfather’s house. I found this out when my sister and I got back to our hotel room and I called my mom saying that we had gotten into the house. She started asking us a million questions to see if certain items that she remembered were still in the house or not. When I said no and described to her what we had seen, she said that we were in the apartment attached to the house. I had no idea that there was an apartment attached to the house! After all of the stories I had heard, you would have thought that there would have been mention of the house having an apartment attached to it, but nope! So on my next trip back, you better believe that I will be shimmying by body behind those beams (because there is definitely space!) and trying to see if those doors open!
In the door of the balcony, was a key still in the keyhole! Naturally I took it and put it in a shadow box with a picture of the house. Best souvenir I could have asked for from this trip.
Standing inside the apartment. Below is the entry way to the cemetery. The cemeteries in Italy are beautiful. They are immaculately kept, with fresh flowers everywhere.
Many people left my grandfather’s town to travel to either North America or South America. This plaque is dedicated to those who have died and are buried in North America and on the wall across from it is a plaque for those in South America.
This is the famous Fontana that my grandfather would speak about. It is smack in the center of town and so many of my grandfather’s stories talk about the fountain. The fountain isn’t that big and it was funny to see it in person to see that it really isn’t that big. When I was little, I would picture this great big fountain because I did not know any better then.
So naturally I had to get water from the fountain and pose for a picture. : ) Below is the church in town but unfortunately it was locked so we couldn’t go inside. I was dying to see the inside because there were tons of stories about the church and the surrounding orchards that my grandfather would tell.
Going to Zoppola was one of the highlights of my trip last year. I felt such a strong pull towards the town my grandfather grew up in. I will definitely be going back to explore more of this beautiful town and the surrounding town.
Thanks for stopping by!