Carmel Ruggeri, our tour leader knows everyone here. In fact, she has lots of cousins. We’ve been welcomed into this little seaside village with such warmth, it is quite humbling. Scoglitti, pronounced Sco-lit-ee – is a town of around 4000 that swells to 70,000 in high season. It’s simple, honest and utterly charming. Our bus has held up traffic as it tries to negotiate the narrow streets and after a magnificent welcome feast last night we were treated to a fireworks display in the piazza. I love the way Italy is liberated, relaxed and unaffected here. The skies are wide and blue, the light bright and the people remind me of the Italians in the Lygon Street of my youth – with the colours and flavours of gelato mounds, twirls of pasta and full glasses of vino bianco. I realise how lucky Melbourne has been to have the tastes and characters of Italy in our own back yard for three generations. It has been but a taste until now. Scoglitti makes sense of it all. Thank you to Gina, our photographer for her superb food photos !