We’ve been already advancing with implacable steps into January, leaving behind the celebrations decorating the passage through the years. An eventful period that might have let us a bit weary according to the complexity of the preparation we’ve completed, and slightly remorseful after exceeding our normal daily food consumption. It is also a time for resolutions, when our increased enthusiasm will let us craft a better and healthier life for ourselves.
This winter holidays, due to a combination of circumstances, I have been offered an unique opportunity of trading food preparation and presents acquirement with spending some time alone. It might sound unthinkable, and rather heart breaking for some, but it had proved to me as a good experience. Among other things, I had plenty of time to enjoy at my own pace, one of my top favorite winter festivity: the sparkly, vivid and consistently light-innovative Christmas market. You might be inclined to think that a tiny mountain city as Aosta will be rather unsatisfactory at this chapter. I thought so too, until I’ve been proved wrong: the Christmas market was like anything else I’ve seen before. It’s beauty and originality resides not only on its exposé but also on its unique location, that originates way back in time… thousands of years ago, these lands of Graians Alps, between the Little and Great Saint Bernard Pass were inhabited by Salassi tribes. It took romans armies several attempts to conquer these celtic original tribes. In 25 BC a victory was finally reached. The emperor Augustus replaces the initial military camp with a military colony and populated it with 3000 veterans of the Rome’s elite special forces, the praetorians. And so, the Augusta Praetoria Sarassorum has been founded. A well-fortified city protected by two streams, the torrents Buthier and Dora. In fact, Augusta Praetoria collected and enjoyed the best architectonic experiences inherited from an emperor Rome. Following the roman stereotype for a “perfect city”, Augusta Praetoria would not miss the entertaining facilities, namely the Amphitheater (gladiators’ arena) and the Theater. It is the latter that it is still standing up, overcoming the vicissitudes of over 2000 years. And it is here that the market was laid down. Wooden stalls embellished with a large variety of outstanding, handcrafted objects. Food and beverages, fire places and light adornments will make the market an even more magical and welcoming place. A fascinating place, result of an harmonically confluence of a glorious past with a modern present in a spectacular landscape.