Anne's Blog

Making Hay during an Umbria Summer

Date: August 2, 2018 - categories: , - Leave your thoughts

As you head up to Assisi in mid-summer,  you’ll note giant round bales of hay at rest between the rows of olive trees.

Around sunset, golden olive bales underscore the majestic beauty of the Basilica di San Francesco stretching out on the hill above.

I remember the days we farmed in the late 70’s and that teeth-gritting itch of the hay as we loaded the bales onto the tractor trailer. I remember helping the women with the cooking and all of us eating outside around noon, seeking patches of shade and cool (photo here, 1976):

….and then back to the haying. They were the smaller rectangular bales then, like the ones Peppe loads, still doing his haying on his own at over eighty.

Peppe, proud of his three thousand bales of hay

Peppe and Gentile before their stacked hay bales

Sometimes, the farmers without the money for a tractor trailer for the hauling of big bales, just bound much of the hay into sheaves, like Peppe and Mandina.

Here we are together in 1976:

Straw was not baled but forked into strawstacks and you can see one here behind Peppe and Mandina (photo, 1976):

….and in this photo of Chiarina and daughter Rossanna (1976 or 1977):

Visiting our farm friends today, you might see them forking hay to carry to their animals:

We don’t do the haying these days for our animals. When we farmed years ago, our hay was needed as winter fodder for our rabbits and sheep. But hay is still needed here – for our goats. They were climbing the fences as the rotoballe – round bales – arrived, noses poked out (already smelling their arriving lunch?)

This load of hay had been baled at Peppa’s farm (as our land insufficient for the appetites of over twenty goats)….

…and the tractor hauled it to us:

Late July and early August is haytime all over Italy. Do enjoy the rounded, rolled bales’ enhancements to Italy’s rural majesty:

Thanks to Emilie Nahon, our Belgian friend, for some of her round hay bale photos. Do enjoy her website,

Click here for more on our rural friends

Read more here about Peppe and his hay feats

Read more about our life on the land

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Privacy Policy

Privacy Italian Legislative Decree n° 196/2003 Under Article 13 of the Italian Legislative Decree no. 196/2003, regulations with regard to the Protection of Personal Data, this is an informative report to all interested parties on the modality of the treatment of personal data, arising from interaction with our website
THE PRINCIPAL FOR DATA TREATMENT During site consultation, personal data referring to identified or identifiable persons can be processed. The principal for data treatment is Anne Robichaud Pian della Pieve Assisi 06081 (PG) Italy. The data will be mainly processed at the mentioned head office by the people responsible for the website or by other people appointed for occasional maintenance operations, provided that their actions conform to of the guarantees enshrined in the Legislative Decree 196/2003.
Web navigation The information systems and software procedures required for the functioning of this website, acquire some personal data during their normal service, the transmission of which is implicit in the use of web communication protocols. This information is not collected with the purpose of identifying interested parties, but due to its very nature, the information could lead to user identification through processes and relations with data held by third parties. In this data category there are IP addresses or domain names belonging to computers used by users who connect to the site, addresses with URI (Uniform Resource Identifier) notification of the requested resources, time of the request, used method in submitting the request to the server, dimension of the file obtained in replying, the numeric code mentioning the reply status given by the server (successful reply, error, etc?) and other parameters referred to the operation system and to the user’s information environment. This data is used with the sole purpose of obtaining anonymous statistical information on the use of the site and to check the correct functioning; immediately after processing, the data is erased.
Data voluntarily supplied by the user The voluntary optional and explicit e-mail transmission to the addresses mentioned in this site implies the subsequent acquisition of the sender’s address, necessary to reply to the queries, as well as the other eventual personal data registered in the message.
OPTIONAL PERSONAL DATA SUPPLY Except for the above mentioned navigation data, the user may be asked to supply his own personal data through queries or messages to the email addresses shown in the contact pages. Failure to provide such data may be the cause of the inability to obtain the requested information from the company.
TREATMENT MODALITY The personal data is treated in compliance with the Legislative Decree no. 196/2003 and held only for the time necessary to achieve the aim for which it has been collected. Specific safety measures are taken to prevent any data loss, illicit or incorrect use and unauthorized access.
RIGHTS OF THIRD PARTIES The data subjects are at any time entitled to obtain confirmation as to whether or not data relating to him are held, to know the contents and the origin, to check the correctness, to ask for integration, updating or change (art. 7 Decree Law 196:June 2003). In accordance with the same article, they are entitled to obtain the erasure, conversion into anonymous form or freezing of all data used in breach of the law, to object, on legitimate grounds, to the processing of data relating to him. All requests have to be transmitted to the e-mail address

Agenzia Viaggi Stoppini in Assisi handles all technical support for my guided visits (bus transportation, organization of meals, etc)