La Rocca

July 28, 2012 § 2 Comments

For the last two weekends we have visited our friends Michael Cartwright and Shona Nunan who live in Bagna di Lucca. They are both Artist’s who we have known from our student days. Nine years ago they relocated to Italy,   they followed their passion and live a life they love, its is great to be with them.

Bagni di Lucca also happens to be close by to “Rocca” where our dear (Melbourne friends) Aldo and Naomi Pierini originally came from. Actually Aldo from Rocca and Naomi from Borgo a Mozzano, un paese vicino. I think everybody who gets to know Aldo and Naomi falls in love with them!  Aldo is well known for his amazing wood carving and gilding.

On impulse I called Aldo ands said guess where I am?… I’m looking down upon the “fiume” river Lima in Bagni dig Lucca. Aldo told me he had not been well recently, but I could feel his excitement when he realised where I was,  close to where he was born.

He said I’ll call my “parenti”family in Rocca, you can go and meet with them. So the next day we set of to find “Rocca”. Dating back to the Middle ages  the village is built on a rocky outcropping, with the remains of an ancient fort atop the highest spot. We asked one of the locals and  were directed to Iliana Pierini house Aldo’s niece, we were invited in and shown out on to a terrace, it was hot and sweltering afternoon made pleasant by a breeze that came up from the valley below. We met with more of  Aldo’s delightful “Parenti” and drank wine with our Macedonia and gelato, later on we were taken on a walk around the village. In my heart I felt Aldo and Naomi where with me, my eyes contemplated their ancient and beloved birthplace. I am really glad we came.



The Ancient Church of Chiesa di S.Maria Assunta “Rocca”Image

With Vincenzo atop the “Rocca” where once stood one of the communication towers [apparently in an earthquake the whole tower toppled down into the valley below] that date back to Roman times when news was sent across the mountains from tower to tower by what must be the precursor to morse code, using fire instead of radio bleeps.


The bright beautiful splashes of colour that are carnations, found everywhere in Italy like the people themselves, hardy and frugal. ImageImage

The Rustic bell tower of the Church “Chiesa di S.Maria Assunta”.


With Aldo’s parenti on the terrace overlooking the valley below a tuscan paradise, still wild and untamed.

Iliana told us these carved frames with photos of his parents, and base relief were some of Aldo’s first wood carvings.


§ 2 Responses to La Rocca

  • Rocca, some many people came from Rocca. Aldo Pierini (born 1916, dead 2014) was son of Virgilio Pierini and Cesira Poli. Cesira was sister, little sister, of my great grand Nonno Pietro Poli (left Italy to Argentina with 14 years old), returned a few years for know his little brothers: Carlo and Cesira. On 1961 my parents went to Italy and know the little brothers of my father nonno (Pietro Poli born at Rocca on feb 3, 1858 dead at Argentina on april 23 1928). I have some photos of this trips with Carlo, Cesira and her son Giacomo (father of Ileana, nonno di Milena, Marco e Mario Muzzarelli). When Aldo Pierini left Italy came to Argentina and, six months later, to Australia. Every year I go to Borgo a Mozzano and climb to Rocca point. Best regards from Quilmes, Buenos Aires, Argentina

    • Dear Carlos, How nice to hear from you, My wife Cinzia and I miss Aldo we saw Aldo and Naomi regularly, they were very much loved by all their friends. We are still in touch with Noami who moved into an aged care home. I have been busy with whole lot of “stuff” and I only just came across message, so I am sorry that I did not get back to you earlier! Un abbraccio Peter

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