20131231-180854.jpgToday it rained during our visit to Lecce. We are mid-way in our trip to the Salento, visiting marvelous archaeological sites and museums. Houses and walls and churches are built in a local baroque style from this creamy limestone, and glow even in a steamy drizzle.

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The main pedestrian piazza borders the ancient amphitheater, whose arena is now occupied not by martyrs, but by the life-size figures of a presepe.
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We visited an exhibition by a painter of seascapes, Oronzo De Matteis; he liked Micah’s drawing, and so posted it next to his works. Just 5 euros!
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20131231-184128.jpgWe also visited, in the 16th-c. castello of the town, an exhibition of paper-mâché (carta pesta) statuary, complete with explanation of how they are made.
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The armature.

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The vestments (note the clay heads, hands, and feet).

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The details (note the eyeballs).

Jakob decided that one piece deserved a song.

Then we came across an antiques fair and saw a French game table. The leaves also fold out into a felt card table, which will be good since the boys learned how to play scopa. The sellers will restore it and ship it to Perugia. Then we’ll have to figure out how to get it home.

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Now it’s off to a New Year’s Eve dinner at La Pocina, a local osteria we discovered recently, where the guy makes his own cheese, wine, digestivi, and everything else. Buon anno!