|Photo thanks to Radol'ca|
I pointed to the dog and looked at the owner quizzically. He just shrugged his shoulders and said: “Of course! Go on inside!”
The house was *amazing* . The hall opened up into a courtyard with old terrazzo tiles and 3 stories of balconies with vines growing on them and hanging plants that hung from almost every surface. Here and there were random ceramic sculptures: a bust of a woman, a tiny yellow horse, a square tile covered in at least 100 miniature green frogs. It was so strange and magical, I was instantly charmed. Suddenly I felt someone staring at me and I looked up to see a tortoiseshell cat perched on a railing and peering down disdainfully.
I climbed up a flight of ancient wooden steps. Came upon a sofa, a small table with a book on it, and a beautiful view down into the courtyard. It was also obvious that someone lived on this floor, so I beat a hasty retreat.
M and S arrived and we heard someone come noisily down the steps and suddenly a large woman burst into the courtyard. “Oh, you’re here for the gallery?” We nodded, gave up all pretenses about not speaking English and asked about the house which it turns out, is more than 500 years old and has been in her husband’s family since his grandfather bought it in 1910. She led us into the cellar— still not sure if this is what they were calling a “gallery”? There were a couple of shelves with various plates and bowls, none of them having anything remotely to do with chickens.
I kept waiting for a hard sell or some kind of trick, but it never came. This woman was just genuinely friendly—she gave us a handful of postcards with pictures of the house in various eras and then said that if we didn’t mind that she’d like to close up and go join her husband outside in the café for coffee...