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Hey there, we are looking for trusted people for house sitting or for general house work in Tuscany countryside, please see our description below if you're interested in spending one or two weeks with us (and our animals) surrounded by nature!
Hello everybody! We are Tommaso and Alessia from Italy.
A few years ago, after an exciting volunteering experience, we moved from the city to the mountain, to start a new life project in close contact with wilderness and natural rhythms. We lived three years in the Alps, in a tiny and lonely village 1400m above sea level, then we moved to the Tuscan Appennines 700m where we settled down in a old-fashioned stone house, surrounded by woods and wild animals.
We both work from home, and that's why we ask our guests to be as quiet and respectful as possible during our working hours. Alessia is a biologist working for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), currently involved in the Red List project about species conservation in the world. Most of the time, she can manage her job even in the middle of an alien landing. Tommaso is a graphic designer and writer, when he feels inspired he can bury himself in his studio up to starve. Especially when he is writing, he is allergic to every noise above 0,001 decibels.
Some people think we are always on holiday just because we don't go to the office, but that's much far from reality. We work hard everyday, and often we are forced to sit at our desks for hours to find the right concentration and inspiration. This not means you'll be alone the whole day: we spend a lot of time gardening, houseworking or walking, and be sure there will be time enough for socializing during meals: we are Italians and our lunches and dinners can last for ages!
We grow a vegetable garden and take care of two cats, two dogs, a exuberant rooster and a bunch of funny hens. They are all considered part of the family, they have their spaces and habits and guests are asked to understand and respect them. We do not eat our pets of course (including the hens), and in return they usually do not eat or bully our guests (I'm just kidding, they do).
Our diet is basically vegetarian, but you are allowed to eat or cook almost any kind of food (not our hens!) and maybe we'll taste it as well.
We are trying to have a sustainable life, living as green as possible and the workawayer has to be interested to live in such a system. This means a responsible use and consumption of electricity and water, such as:
*️️️️️️️️️️️️Electricity and computers off, when you are not there
*️️️️️️️️️️️️Water from taps and shower as short as possible
*️️️️️️️️️️️️When washing, always taking care that there is full machine.
*️️️️️️️️️️️️No waste of food
We often host people at home, friends, acquaintances, travelers or just curious passing by. We are working to create a kind of "cultural farm", a place made of art, ideas, dreams, exchange, conviviality and love for nature.
Since 2016 we tell our experience in a blog ("Al ritmo delle stagioni") and in 2017 we self-printed a book ("Un anno di vita in montagna"), which has had an unexpected success in Italy with thousands of copies distributed. By the way, we are working at a new book right now, so get ready: you could be part of the story :)
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
Guests could learn something about our culture and activities, such as gardening, cooking italian food, wildlife photography, nature and wild animals observation, making wicker baskets and so on.
We used to speak a good english but it is a bit rusty right now. You should be patient and give us trust :)
In general we are looking for positive, curious and friendly people, who understand the spirit of a human and cultural exchange, with some experiences working outside (garden/vegetable garden), not afraid to get hands dirty and MOST OF ALL with a strong confidence with animals (they are free in the garden, and most of the time you'll be much in contact with them).
It would be nice if they could help us in:
*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️gardening: cleaning and collecting small stones from the garden/watering the vegetable garden
*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️general house maintenance/painting walls/little renovation works and so on
*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️animal care: feeding them and taking care when they are outside in the garden
*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️language practice (english or whatever)
*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️house and pet sitting
*️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️️general cleaning: volunteers clean their room and bathroom when they leave
You may need to bring old clothes, strong shoes (or boots), and work gloves. Our guests need to be self-sufficient once we explained daily job.
Preview of the calendar during the year:
March - Helping in renovations inside
April - Helping in renovations inside, starting to work outside if the weather is good
May - starting to work outside in the vegetable garden, but the wheather can change every day
June - working outside, vegetable garden and helping in renovations
July - working outside, vegetable garden and helping in renovations
August - working outside, vegetable garden and helping in renovations
September - if the weather is good, working outside cleaning the garden from leaves and picking acorns. Helping in renovations inside and cooking
October - if the weather is good, working outside cleaning the garden from leaves and picking acorns. Helping in renovations inside and cooking
November - Helping in renovations inside
*️*️*️ IMPORTANT *️*️*️
If you would like to join us, we need to ask you to have insurance before traveling. We only host people with insurance. Thanks!
HOUSE and PET SITTING (period to be defined even together)
For workawayers interested to do house and pet sitting we ask to come a few days in advance to show them how the house works. We can accept only WAW with feedbacks.
The main tasks will be taking care of the stove (during the cold season from October to May), vegetable garden (spring/summer), the animals (two cats, a bunch of hens and maybe one or two dogs if we decide not to bring them with us), that means basically feeding them, petting them every now and then check they don't put themselves in troubles during the day. The only requirement we ask is a strong love and confidence for animals. Workawayers will have plenty of free time and a good opportunity to enjoy the house, the garden and the beautiful sorroundings (including the unforgettable tuscan taverns).
We have a spacious and well equipped double room just for guests, with a double bed and a single bed. It can happens to share the room with other guests, but it's rare and we can talk about this in advance.
The house has a shared kitchen, a small but cozy living room, some undefined rooms and two shared bathroom: for 99% we only use the toilet A, so you can consider toilet B almost like a private bathroom, and we'll do the same with the first one (note that "A" and "B" are not quality ratings!).
We are renovating the house and some areas are still a big mess (not the ones mentioned before). We try to keep home clean and tidy, but take note this is a country house, with a large stove for heating (that means dust and firewood all around), cats and dogs always around (that means lot of hairs in the air), spiders and scorpions occasionally appearing and saying hello (rather than kill them, we gently accompany them to the door).
Unfortunately, our place is not easily accessible by public transport. It's quite easier if you have a private means of transport, otherwise you must be able to manage local buses (and their rough timetables: busfox.com/timetable is the website for Tuscany where you can find the timetables and calculate the route) or feel comfortable with hitchhiking. If necessary, especially for a long stay, we can arrange to pick you up by car at the train station of Arezzo or Cesena.
Our house is quite isolated, there is only a bar a few meters away, but in the village (6 km from home) you can find some shops: small grocery, pharmacy, post office, ATM and the bus station.
We are tolerant and open minded, but we do not accept any form of violence, racism, sexism, homophobia, prejudice and discriminations in general.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week