Puglia, Calabria, Naples – 2018

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After last-minute car trouble postponed our plans for a central European road trip, Bari (at Italy’s heel) turned out to be the most affordable destination south of Ljubljana, so off we were. We rented a car at the airport and headed straight past Bari to the hills and the famed trulli region of central Puglia, Italy’s heel. A trullo is like a dry, southern-climate version of a Hobbit’s house: a small, cone-shaped building made of flat stones that is characteristic only of this part of Italy. Drive up into the hills of Puglia and they’re everywhere: from old, gray, half-collapsed sheds on the edge of fields to cute homes consisting of a couple of trulli and a modern addition and even white-washed mansions with a dozen trulli tips rising from the roof. Puglia, or at least this part of it, is more densely inhabited than we imagined. Where there are no houses or towns, it’s agriculture, particularly olives, and rocky, red soil.

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