Unexpected Friendship Organization

9 Jul

Each summer, when we leave Italy, I try to reflect on the experiences we had and what we will miss most. Of course, we miss just about everything, but each year, certain things stand out. This year, what we will miss most is the people we met and the friendships we made, both local and non.

This was our third and longest stay in Cortona. Although we rented a car and drove about 800 kilometers to other cities and towns, we also spent more time getting to know Cortona locals and meeting Cortona repeaters, some who have been returning for more than 20 years.

Our local friend Massimo asked why so many of us return annually, although he truly knows the answer. Cortona is the kind of town where people can feel at home and experience a sense of belonging. The town is big enough, yet not too big. Busy enough, yet not always crowded. Faces become familiar; smiles are abundant; and the welcome mat is warm and genuine.

When I reflected on all the friendships we made, I decided to create a group called “unexpected friendship organization” and ran the idea by some Italian friends. Hence, UFO, (pronounced oo fo). This post is dedicated to all its members because each of you made our trip extra special this year. Salute!






















Jim Henson said, “There’s not a word yet for old friends who’ve just met.” I think he’s right. One just needs to look at the smiles to recognize who they are.

Till next we meet…arrivederci – and a heartfelt thanks for the wonderful memories!



Judy and Len

ps…I still have much to write about and so many more photos to share, so please come back for more.

12 Responses to “Unexpected Friendship Organization”

  1. Loren July 10, 2013 at 7:03 AM #

    What a beautiful post and such fantastic pictures! I got a little choked up. 🙂 Memories are so valuable, the good ones can help carry us through the tough spots. Looks like you have many to add to your treasure trove.


    • blogginginitaly July 10, 2013 at 10:46 AM #

      So many, it’s true! And can’t wait to make more this summer with your and yours!


  2. Florence Connelly July 10, 2013 at 7:39 AM #

    wonderful blog and great photos of all the new amichis !!!!
    You both look 10 years younger in Italia ;-)))looks like next summer – you may be staying even a little longer!!!


    • blogginginitaly July 10, 2013 at 10:46 AM #

      10 years younger? I’m already looking for tickets! Want to join us???


  3. Yvonne Wilson July 10, 2013 at 12:08 PM #

    It was such a pleasure meeting you both in Cortona! Wish we could have spent more time together, maybe next year? Keep in touch and let us know when you are returning!!


  4. Dani e Massi July 10, 2013 at 12:13 PM #

    abbiamo passato dei bei momenti con voi, che siete due persone SPECIALI…ci vediamo spero presto per un’altro brindisino e……UN ALTRO BACINOO !!! con affetto Dani e Massimo, Niki & Edo da Cortona


  5. Patricia Hughes July 10, 2013 at 2:45 PM #

    Judy and Len
    We feel honoured to be part of the UFO! Keep in touch and look foreard to seeing you next year.
    Un abbraccio da Patricia and Massimo


    • blogginginitaly August 9, 2013 at 10:58 PM #

      Sorry I missed your comment. I think you were my first UFO!
      Abbracci to you both!


  6. Jane July 12, 2013 at 9:10 PM #

    What a lovely ending to your summer in Cortona. So many happy times and special people. Thank you for including me!


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