From Impruneta to Greve, October is the time for Fairs here in Tuscany. And ooooh they are one of my favourite memories from growing up here and still one of our favourite things to experience. The Fiera di San Luca in Impruneta this year is 14-22 October and is one of the oldest livestock fairs in Europe. An ancient trading post between itinerant shepherds selling their livestock and the local village selling items needed for the journey such as shoes and food, this is one of the most ancient and culturally rich Fairs to be found.
In the meantime, the Pagliaio Fair in Greve on the fourth Saturday of the month, is a bonanza of organic goodies, straw baskets and ceramics.
There's nothing like a fair to immerse you in the local vibe of a place. Stalls parade their wares celebrating all that is local, while wafts of salami or roast chestnuts entice you along. For a child this colourful display of nougat (Torrone) of various shapes sizes and flavours, chocolates, and warm cialdine, lit up by warm bare bulbs deep into the autumn evenings, has an unforgettable magic about it.
As Leo Codacci wrote in 'The Most Beautiful Town in the World, "the lives of the people of Impruneta revolved around ‘La Fiera’. They would wait until The Fair to ask their Madonna for an indulgence; to take a spin on the Merry-Go-Round; to profess their love to their beloved or to buy a new umbrella."
What more can you say?