The farmhouse is relatively modern. It was built in the ‘70s on the site of an annex of the historic Podere Becucci where there were straw presses, chickens and rabbits.
On the top of the hill - Il Poggio - they made wine and olive oil and produced milk, wheat and fruit. There was the big house, outbuildings, a well and the cellars on a small strip of land surrounded by a valley of cultivated fields.
Becucci was my grandmother Mara’s surname, the eldest daughter of Luigi, who was the son of Alessandro, who was the son of Raffaello, the forefather.
Raffaello is the earliest Becucci of whom we have memory and records. However, according to the "General Land Registry" of 1795, our family was here a long time before.
Raffaello was one of three male triplets, all of whom survived. It was a remarkable birth for that time and considered almost supernatural. This mythical, almost mystical event seemed to bless the sacred beginning of an important lineage.
I have always been entranced by this magical aspect of our genealogy and believe that my family was born together with this land and with these olive trees. Our roots and the ones on the hill are born from the same origin and substance. We are not noble, but we carry in our blood the constant presence of this historic synergy. And we are proud of it.
The Agricola Becucci business closed with the last bottling of Chianti Colli Senesi in 1995. I glued on the last labels by hand!
Every time the countryside changes its shape and colors, images reappear, whispering stories.
Luigi, my mother's grandfather, was a fox hunter. He loved music; he would put on a record and lay down in the farmyard to listen.
My grandmother had really long black hair, she lived with trees, goats, chickens, cats, dogs and peacocks.
The peacocks sang a song that still gives me the thrill of a fresh breeze on a summer evening. They slept on the holm oak above the cellar, a 550-year-old giant.
And when the fireflies dotted the darkness of the valley it seemed like San Gimignano was suspended in mid-air.
What belonged to the past died with the voice of my grandfather; what we remember with emotion is the inspiration that moves us. Now we are building the future.