Viki Psihoyos gives us a taste of Balanchine, just off Li Galli, “the dance island” a small atoll off the Amalfi coast and once home to Russian ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev.
Postcard from guest Tara O’Leary, India: Tasting Royal Rajasthan:
A beautiful tented camp was a most unexpected pleasure. From my tent, I watched birds along the water, catching my breath as I saw a flock of pigeons take flight. A hawk came out of nowhere, took one of the group and carried it to a tree across the river.
Later, I joined another member of our group, Ann, and a guide and his assistant on a walk of the area to look specifically for birds. Ann and I were beyond thrilled to catch a glimpse of the brilliantly colored bee-eater. It was without a doubt the most luxurious birding I have probably ever done, with someone to carry the spotting scope and to offer us water along the way. [Read more…]
You could say that Elena Portoles wins the prize for PMCA’s ‘Most Frequent Traveler.’ Since 1997, Elena has been on almost every single one of Peggy’s programs, tasting and exploring her way across Italy, Spain, Morocco, and just this last month—India.
Here, we interview Elena in the midst of her seventh program with Peggy, India: Tasting Royal Rajasthan. Moments later, Peggy surprised her with the ultimate thank you gift for being such a loyal guest: an invitation to be her guest on the upcoming 20th Anniversary Program in June! Elena was stunned and replied, “Terrific! Elba is the only trip I haven’t been on.”
During this anniversary year, we invite all of you to send in your stories, impressions, photos, and memories from the road. Photos, videos, emails—we want it all! Your stories keep us inspired to develop new programs, and to bring new groups to these destinations each year.
When describing our culinary adventures, we always tell potential guests to “Expect surprises!” but it can be hard to explain the exact quality of unexpected moments that pop up throughout a trip.
When Natalie Beck, a friend of a friend from Boulder, pulled Peggy’s phone number out of her pocket and joined the 2010 Amalfi sailing program last June, the course of her European vacation was changed and she jumped head-first into an experience that she describes as “something out of the movies.”
“I was living by the rule of ‘Yes’,” Natalie explains, “No matter what it was, I decided to say Yes.” Saying yes became infinitely easier as she traveled with Peggy among new Italian friends. “I was treated like family by everyone I met, the whole time, because I was with Peggy.”
Watch Natalie retell a few of her favorite moments from the trip in this short video clip, filmed at Cafe Aion in Boulder:
When all is said and done, what we do here at PMCA is all about people. Those we meet and those we travel with. The ingredients that become familiar and the recipes we learn bloom into larger stories, even after we have returned home.
During this 20th Anniversary year, we are making it a priority to collect and share stories from our alumni, about the moments that stand out and the ways that a trip with PMCA has impacted your lives upon returning home.
The Finkelstein Family +Captain Tony and my son Graham (standing), enjoying lunch aboard our trusty vessel, off of Italy’s Amalfi coast.
Each month, we receive inquiries from travelers who are eager to join one of our programs to Italy, India, Spain or Morocco, but who often can’t make the dates work with their own busy schedules. In these special cases, we suggest that guests organize a private or custom small group program with Peggy.
Custom programs have included one-on-one cooking tours of Florence and the surrounding countryside, family reunions spent sailing along the Amalfi coast, and a honeymoon in romantic Marrakech. With decades devoted to researching regional cuisine and forming local relationships, visiting a country with Peggy can feel like visiting old friends and family, rather than a foreign land. [Read more…]