Before driving to Cortona, we stopped at the Chianciano Museum to learn of the Etruscan occupation of this area approximately 600 B.C.E.. After viewing many artifacts of numerous excavations and having our guide Paolo narrate what has been interpreted from these findings, we then boarded our bus once again for our exploration of the town of Cortona, made famous by Francis Mayes book "Under the Tuscan Sun". The old town perched high on a hillside, teeming with tourists, provided our daily workout negotiating the very steep streets. While there we witnessed a wedding and then purchased sandwiches, olives, ripe tomatoes, watermelon and wine for a group picnic at the top of the town in the shadow of the Sanctuary of Santa
Our last night in Chinciano and Tuscany we drove outside town to an Agroturismo, Palazzo Bandino, for a typical Tuscan meal. Aside from consuming the obligatory copious amounts of wine, we started with a delicious salad, ribollita soup, ribs and sausage, and biscotti dipped in vin santo, a sweet wine. Never have so many, consumed so much food and wine, while frivolity reigned supreme.