Siena, Italy

Although it is rather unexpected to find a passage about Siena in a book about fine bourbon in Kentucky, self does have good memories of visiting this part of Italy with her niece, Irene, in 2015. Maybe later, when she has time, she can find a few pictures from that trip and add them to this post.

Wright Thompson travels to Siena so he can watch Siena play Florence. He’s met at a train station by his friend, Fred Marconi.

Rows of trees lined the road, pine and cypress. Castle keeps rose from the hills.

Marconi’s family has lived in Siena for at least five hundred years . . . and he is proud of his history. This wasn’t some old man talking. He was a forty-two-year-old graffiti artist who plays bass in a rock band. He’s got a Ramones tattoo. He baptized his three-year-old son on the 750th anniversary of the battle that took place on the peaceful field he was driving me to see.

“This was one of the biggest battles in the Middle Ages,” he said. “It was September fourth, 1260. Dante talked about this battle in The Divine Comedy and said it was a terrible day. The Sienese turned the Arbia River into a red river of blood.”

Pappyland: A Story of Family, Fine Bourbon, and the Things That Last, p. 20

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