If you missed my previous post..

may have looked like I gave up blogging all together, but that’s simply not true. But I did take a break. Real life got pretty busy for a while, and this took a definite back seat. The break is now over, and you can read the fruits of my labour here and here.

If you want to subscribe to the new blog, click over to the about page and scroll. There’s a little box, below all my words, just the right size for your email address.


A new blog and a new home


It’s been a while, but for two good reasons.

The first is that we have upped and moved countries, and we are now in the Netherlands (in Utrecht, while flat hunting in Amsterdam). Moving house is difficult, moving countries is more difficult. Moving out of Italy is more difficult again, even this morning I had another, completely unnecessary, conversation with our ex-internet provider.

I think we’re still recovering from the pack-and-move.

The second very good reason is that I have shifted this blog and its content over to a self-hosted server, you can now find us on moltoandmolto.com. Everything is still Italy themed, but I may replace Portofino and Limone photos with tulips and windmills soon.

There is a subscribe link on the About page, if you want to receive email updates on new posts. I still have photos I want to share and stuff I want to say about Italy (including the trip we took last month down to Naples and the Amalfi Coast) before I switch over to Dutch stuff.

First impressions here, though, do make Italy look a little old-fashioned. Our airbnb has an induction stove top and Matt’s little Italian moka pot is made of the wrong metal to work on it. He’s using the provided (self-cleaning) coffee machine instead.

So we’re tired but we’re happy.


A year in weekly photos

Great Barrier Island

For my birthday two years ago, my friend gave me two disposable cameras with the instruction to take a photo per week, and then have the films developed together. I failed to keep to the suggested schedule, by a long shot. I didn’t manage to finish the films until sometime earlier this year, and then they weren’t developed until I was in London last week. So, a bit tardy. I’ve posted a couple of my favourites here.. First up is the first of the film to turn out, meaning I lost a couple from the start of the film. We spent New Years 2013 with friends on Great Barrier Island in New Zealand. This is Matt hanging out on the non-swimming beach.

Wellington boat sheds

Time hasn’t been too kind to the film; both cameras expired a year ago and experienced some hot and cold temperature extremes, so I knew I wasn’t going to get much from them. But I was surprised with the colour and comparable quality of the photos that did turn out.

Here you can see the film doing funny things in this shot of the Wellington boat sheds. We have booked flights to visit home in January, it is going to be a little strange being a visitor in my own city.

Lake Garda

A trip to Lake Garda. I’m pretty sure, though I can’t be certain, that this was on my first visit back in May last year, not too long after we had arrived when I went to pick up my second hand bike.


There was another gap here, maybe I was taking photos while on those hateful summer camps and they were lost, maybe I wasn’t. Quite a few photos definitely didn’t turn out. But this is in Budapest, where we went towards the end of summer 2013.


And then to Nice! Matt on another beach, a little overdressed perhaps.


Sometimes I took two photos in one week to make up for the gaps and sometimes I handed my little plastic camera to Matt, so here is me making faces hanging out on the same beach. I also like taking photos of the ocean.


My parents are on the left of this photo, which could be in Innsbruck but I think is in Fussen, when we visited Schloss Nueschwanstein.

Mostar cemetery

A cemetery in Mostar, Bosnia and Herzogovina.

Cinque terre

Swimming with the sister off a beach along the Cinque Terre. We don’t go in for tanning, obviously, and yes I do wear sunglasses while swimming in the ocean.


Bikes in Amsterdam..


I’m pretty sure this is in Bologna, where we were just before Christmas last year to see Nick Cave.




Spring 2014 in Rovereto.


I often passed this building on my way to the Verona high school where I was teaching English communication classes.


We took a trip to Amsterdam, our first time returning since living there for a couple of months back in 2010. We’ve only lived in our small town for six months, but it’s crazy how fast you forget the big city. I was so enthralled by the lights on the first night we arrived, and how beautiful the buildings are that line the canals.

Matt wasn’t inclined to agree with me, but for our night arrival the overall impression of Amsterdam was very different to anywhere in Italy. There was so much more light on every street, than I have ever seen in an Italian town. Amsterdamers don’t close the curtains on their living spaces, nor do stores shutter their large windows. Compared to Italy, where everyone lives behind their shutters and shades, especially the shops who, even when they are open, are very discreet with their small windows. It took us close to a month of living here to realise just how many businesses there were on our street, even a bread shop on the corner!

But now, for recommendations for my Mum when she next holidays there:

The 9 Straatjes (the 9 streets)
Nine streets between Leidsestraat and Raadhuisstraat full of cute, often specialty, shops. There’s one that specialises in toothbrushes/paste and has a toothbrush carousel in the window.

The way I could never make them, at the Pancake Bakery (Prinsengracht 191). I order them with butter and icing sugar, then add syrup from the bottles on the tables.

Preferably in Vondel Park. Preferably with a proper dutch bike, or whatever you can get your hands on.

City views
From the top floor of the city library (close to the Centraal Station). I think there is a restaurant up there, but you don’t need to go through it to access the outdoor terrace.

The Albert Cuyp Markets
In De Pijp (giant, fresh stroopwafels optional).

In any of the bruine cafes. We had particularly delicious bitterballen and goat cheese crokets at Magere Brug, a café on the corner of Nieuwe Kerkstraat and the Amstel river (over the Magere Bridge).

Buy a hot chocolate!
They will serve you warm chocomel (chocolate milk), delicious.

Canalside house museums
Museum Willet-Holthuysen (Herengracht 605) and the Museum Van Loon (Keizersgracht 672).

Houseboat museum
A canal houseboat, that is now a museum (Prinsengracht 296).

A shop full of postcards
That was visible from one of the bridges on Leidsestraat, but I can’t remember what canal it was heading down.. possibly Keizergracht? Not such great advice I’m afraid.

A Middle Eastern (Morrocan, Turkish, Lebanese, Iranian) restaurant housed in an old church (Albert Cuyp Straat 182). We didn’t eat there this time around, but it was pretty delicious those few years ago.