Yesterday we went to the other beach, Feniglia (Fe-knee-lee-a), which is 10 km from the villa near Orbetello. It was quite different – more of a public beach, but still Olivier phoned ahead to reserve beach chairs for us and also, to make reservations at the restaurant, which makes great seafood pasta.
I realized later that there are several, privately-held beaches wedged together here, and they’re distinguished by the color and style of the beach umbrellas. Ours was called Bracchio, but there were about four or five others I could see from the shore.
The water here was different: you could walk for a long way straight into the sea without the depth changing. It was great for Lily, like a large wading pool. There were several yachts anchored in the distance, and hillsides with lush trees and houses perched among them. We stayed for the whole afternoon, opting to forgo Charlotte’s typical naptime, around 2 p.m. She was content to play quietly in the sand, and transfer sea water from one bucket to another.
We had the seafood pasta for lunch, and Lily got her daily dose of watermelon (Anguria, in Italian). Olivier ordered a nice, local white wine which reminded me of grapefruit or lime. There was a play area just off the restaurant where the kids could climb down to, and so I went with them after lunch to kill some time playing around a miniature house, where they transferred handfuls of sand around to the windowsills, then swept them off – over and over again.
The four of us hosed off back by the swimming pool when we returned to the villa, and the girls got baths. The sea water, sand, and 50 sunscreen make for a sticky combination.
Olivier grilled, and just as we began eating Miriam gestured to something over my shoulder, which I assumed to be a large mosquito, or one of the enormous yellowjackets, which Olivier says can sting while in flight. Instead, it was a fox chewing on one of Dawn’s sandals, which we had laid out on the steps to dry. The fox looked past us with a vacant, wild stare, then began chewing on a stick. It freaked Miriam out, but Olivier smiled as it ran off.