Anne's Blog

Novella and Assisi Springtime

Date: March 28, 2019 - categories: , , , , , , - 2 Comments

It’s all backwards here in March this year: the month came IN like a lamb and is moving out like a lion.  March is gusting into April with cold and windy weather.

But spring is waiting in the lobby: our peach trees are in bloom

And at Novella’s market stall in Assisi,  she might be dressed snugly in a felt jacket as she sells the last of the cold-weather vegetables  – cultivated together with her husband – but her cheery yellow daffodils and red and white tulips backdrop them on the stone wall.   An augury of springtime?

I resisted the huge crispy heads of cabbages, cauliflower as well as the bunches of Swiss chard bound by Novella’s husband with willow branches (why waste money on rubber bands?).  Their spinach tempted today:

As she weighed the spinach, Novella told me stories about her forty-eight years (she’s seventy-six now) selling produce on the small Assisi piazza near the main square….

….and we reminisced about the countless times over the years that I’d stopped for vegetables, often with tour guests to shop before making together lunch in our home:

And each time – as today – impossible to get away with just one’s purchase.  This morning, Novella stuffed salads into the bag on top of the spinach and then armfuls of turnip greens.

A hug and a kiss followed before I left.  Not the final arrivederci, though:   as I was backing up, Novella came dashing over to my car with two bunches of daffodils wrapped in newspaper.

They’re on on our table now, bringing springtime cheer into our home. Let us now just hope for springtime itself.   And beans, zucchini, wild asparagus and  cherries soon at Novella’s stand.

Read about the outdoor produce stands and customs related to  pregnant women

Read about Novella – and her husband, Bruno

Read about Novella and wild asparagus




  • Jennifer Longhofer says:

    I have not had the chance to meet Novella yet hoping to get the chance before I leave !

  • Janet Eidem says:

    To me, Assisi means Novella, Novella means Assisi. A quick smile and greeting. The best of produce and a riot of floral color. I remember her lilacs. She herself is a sweet flower.

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