The GORGEOUS MARSHA of SPLENDEROSA has us all back from a little break over the summer and she has asked us gals BY INVITATION ONLY to write about……….
TO share something with YOU!An item , a place an event……………so, I thought I would share a little bit of my LIFE with you!
PLEASE POP OVER TO HER SITE FOR THE OTHER BLOG POSTS ON THIS WRITING ASSIGNMENT!After you finish reading ME of course!Don’t worry I will REMIND you again!
It was a few years back………I got myself invited with my friends into one of the premiere decorators of all time Axel Vervoordt castle.
KASTEEL van’s – GRAVENWEZEL built in the 12 century and a tour of his Belgium offices.It all started by wanting to go to his OPEN HOUSE.You see he opens his castle twice a year to the public………
So,I cannot get airline tickets for the week of the OPEN CASTLE.I am beside myself………..
I have a good friend who lives there and she informs me he lives down the street from her!So, Sally suggests we go to BEERVELDE instead which is another type of GARDEN ~ ANTIQUE OPEN HOUSE an hour away………so I perk up.
Somehow, I end up calling Park van Beervelde and getting the MAN himself………..we had a lovely conversation and previous to this we had sent a few e-mails back and fourth.One thing led to another and it slipped out I had wanted to go see AXEL’s home but had to settle for his estate instead.He pipes up I know AXEL, I can get you into to see his castle!!!!!!!!!!!I am BESIDE myself with JOY!
This all came about as I had frequent flyer miles and could fly two people overseas for FREE.My dear friend at the time was having a BIG BIRTHDAY so, I called her husband to ask if I could take her to BELGIUM with me for a week.Of course, I asked the ITALIAN HUSBAND FIRST!He NEVER takes vacation but that is another story for another day!He said, “YES,INDEEDY!”
Called SALLY asked if we could reside with her and plans were made.ALL GOOD TO GO!
THE COUNT…….at PARK van Beervelde …….YES….. he was real COUNT made arrangements for all of us to visit……. the castle.As I corresponded with THE COUNT I had no idea at the time he held a TITLE………..he asked me if I was a CONTESSA!!I reply, “OH, NO……..I am a WANT~TO~BE CONTESSA………..our phone call ends and days go by.
The COUNT sends me some snail mail………….about AXEL being in the paper………..with the newspaper clipping and his stationary states that he is a COUNT not once NOT TWICE but THREE times over……………….I am MORTIFIED!Now, the reason he even asked me if I was a real Contessa was because of my e-mail address……………IOLACONTESSA@GMAIL.COM.Those of you who know me know that the HUSBAND (lets blame him)asked me a secret code name for the email set up.I said, “CONTESSA”of course and that was already taken……..so I threw a little fit stating ,”PERO IO SONO LA CONTESSA!”So, with swiftness and not quite explaining what this was to be used for he set me up for LIFE with this e-mail address!Had I known you all would be seeing that I would have been boring ELIZABETH K.So, now you know how I became known as LA CONTESSA!
Anyway,we leave the STATES…………we arrive in BELGIUM……..to a GORGEOUS GATED HOME.You see I knew SALLY from my FLORENCE DAYS……….I had to move back to the STATES and she moved on to ANTWERP.Although, she really is from NEW YORK .When I knew her in Florence she looked like CLEOPATRA a stunning BEAUTY!She still is a stunning beauty but with short hair!
Off to the offices of AXEL we go………an old MILL.We are greeted by a lovely woman and taken on a visit to all floors.We even meet THE Mrs.Vervoordt.Totally enthralled with what we were seeing and acting as if we could be paying customers!Next stop the castle………….and who is there but AXEL himself and GERMAN television taping him.He was so kind and took a moment to have a photo taken with us!This was all before DIGITAL!!Let me show you a few photos I snapped…………..I apologize as I had to snap a photo of the photo so the clarity isNOT so good in these photographs.
Carla, don’t look!
Note the full bags on the ground………Most of that was mine to bring HOME!The Count was a gorgeous man very embarrassed for us to see him in his WELLIES in the cow paddies directing traffic .I recognized him right away and yelled out the car window…….”IT’s the CONTESSA from CALIFORNIA!You can imagine how embarrassed my friends were!
I have to say to date this trip was one of the HI~LIGHTS of my travels………….it was so fun to see SALLY in the land of TULIPANI (tulips) and her beautiful home.To be welcomed inside the home of AXEL and his wife and to be so graciously greeted by THE COUNT in the cow pasture…….(I loved that!).The COUNT and I have corresponded through Facebook as he has the same birthday as my MOTHER’s!It would be worth planning YOUR trip around this event if YOU are lucky enough to be traveling to BELGIUM!Do remind him of me…………..he may even have the photo of my baby chicks still up in his office as I told him I would name one after HIM!
So, there you have the little story about AXEL the COUNT and ME!
One last note to SHARE.I do not use the normal photo album to keep my treasured photos.Instead I use old books!With beautiful ribbon to cinch them closed.Take a look………
Now head over to MARSHA’s for other tales and sharing……………..DON’T FORGET!
Click on the LINK BELOW!