Matera. 3/21/18

Today is a pretty quiet day for me. It is John and Sarah’s opinion that I should not be walking around the Matera sassi with its uneven pavement, hills, and lots of steps. I spend the morning in our cave catching up on my posting. Sarah and John go to visit the Crypt of Original Sin. I have been there before and it is a lot of uneven ground and sitting on the floor of a cave. Not in my ability zone.

The Crypt of Original Sin is situated in a rocky hollow overlooking the limestone cliff along the ancient Appian Way. Inside the “Painter of The Flowers of Matera” has narrated scenes from the Old and New Testament in a cycle of frescoes dating back to the 9th century. A. D.

Lights in the cave pick up the various paintings. There are three niches depicting St. Peter, the Madonna and child, and three archangels. On the side wall there is the creation story with God dividing Light (depicted by a woman) and Darkness (a young man) and the whole Garden of Eden creation and expulsion. Tying this all together is a field of red flowers.

St. Peter with St. John and St. Andrew
Three archangels
Madonna and Child
Creation story

Sarah and John get back around lunchtime and seem pleased that they were able to go see this amazing 1000 year old work of art. I in the meantime am pleased that I was able to catch up on my blog and have a little alone quiet time.

For lunch we head across our little alley to Osteria Pico. For once I choose something truly delicious.

Since we all need more vegetables we order insalata mista
Sarah’s spaghettoni, is made from grano arso,  blackened oven sweepings. A true dish of poverty.This is served with tomato sauce and beans.


My fabulous dish is ferricelli with pistachio pesto
John’s selection is strozzapreti with pepper sauce and bread crumbs

After lunch Sarah heads off to the cathedral in the sassi. This activity is deemed too difficult for me. She sees some excellent frescoes.

The upper panel of this fresco from the cathedral reminds me of the Final Judgement in Santa Maria Del Casale outside of Brindisi

John and I laze around the rest of the afternoon. After Sarah returns she has a two hour session in the Roman thermal baths at the hotel. Around 8PM we go out in the rain in search of pizza.

At Ristorante La Talpa John and I split a sausage, cardoncelli, and mushroom pizza. Yum!


Sarah has a Pizza Arso (or burnt flour) with chef’s choice for toppings. This is a kitchen sink pizza!

Since we have a long drive tomorrow, we are off after dinner to pack and turn in early.



One thought on “Matera. 3/21/18”

  1. Okay, the pistachio pesto sounded so wonderful! I want some! Glad your companions are watching out for you and making sure you don’t overdo (too much!). Your back and knee are continuing to hold up? Take care of yourself!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.