I find it hard to believe. Forty years have passed since I first set foot on Boggioli soil, my first tentative steps towards the azienda agricola of today and prize-winning extra virgin olive oil.
The entry for my diary of 25 August 1975 reads: ‘Morning damp, threatening rain. Boggioli deserted and moist, overgrown. Looked in upstairs only – good condition considering. Great barn. Water (pump down the hill) and electricity. Many, many olives. Vines also. Fruit trees.’ I asked for a week to think about it – and did I ever think about it!
The following Saturday I told the sellers that I would buy the farm, albeit with less land (which I eventually bought some years later), and the next day, 31 August, I signed the compromesso, the document that committed both seller and buyer. At a celebratory dinner that evening one of my friends said that he didn’t believe that I would ever go through with it. At times I had wondered that myself.
The sale actually went through the following November. The journey had begun.