What to Expect WWOOFing at Castello di Potentino (Part 1)
But then, there’s the rest of it. Living in a new place, perhaps far away from home, working with other wwoofers, and enjoying your down time.
So, here’s some more details on those aspects of wwoofing at Castello di Potentino, covered here and in Part 2 of this post.
Where We Live and Who We Live With
The wwoofers share a flat which is located right outside the Castle, very close to the courtyard. There are three bedrooms in the flat, as well as a pullout couch in the main room which includes a little kitchen and breakfast table.
When I arrived, there were 16 of us. I have to say, it was quite impressive that we managed to share one bathroom and keep the peace! By the time I left, we were down to four wwoofers. Depending on how many other wwoofmates you volunteer with, you may get quite a different living experience.
Sharing a living space with so many people at the beginning was probably the toughest thing for me, mainly because I’m more on the introverted side (and I also sleep early, like an old grandma).
Tip: If you’re travelling to any place where you’ll be sharing accommodations, bring some earplugs!
Given that there’s lots of different personalities coming together from all different parts of the world, you have to keep an open mind.
That being said, anyone wwoofing at the Castle will usually have a few things in common to bond over — a love for travel, adventure, and good food and wine.
At the end of the day, we all looked out for each other, shared our chips, made each other coffee, and sang and laughed a lot!
What We Eat
There’s a whole post devoted to eating at the Castle, but here’s a summary. For breakfast, wwoofers eat in their flat. There are runs to the store in Seggiano to stock up on items like cereal, milk, bananas, apples, bread and whatever else people want to eat. There is also always coffee and tea being put on.
Tip: Seggiano, the nearest town, is walkable (approximately, half an hour). You can go there on your day off to pick up supplies or eat out.
For lunch and dinner, we were absolutely fortunate to have Christina Dale as our chef. When she hasn’t been there, Charlotte is the one who runs the kitchen and instructs wwoofers on the meal plan. The food is still divine!
And on days off, wwoofers can walk to Seggiano to eat out at one of their three restaurants.
Again, more on eating here!
What to Pack
During the month of October, the temperatures at Castello di Potentino ranged from highs of 20-something degrees Celsius down to the low teens. However, we definitely had a few very chilly spells when it went down to single digits.
I wouldn’t say to pack your down coat, but perhaps bring some compact items that could help to add some warmth if needed (e.g. toque, neck warmer, wool socks, base layer).
For clothes to work in, I basically packed what I wear when going backcountry camping — dry-fit tops that wick away sweat, a hat to protect from the sun, hiking shoes (though most people just wore runners), and a light rain jacket for wetter days.
Tip: Some wwoofers liked to dress up a bit more for dinnertime, especially if we had guests. So, aside from work clothes, bring some nicer items to freshen up with.
In addition to clothes, bring your own: Towel, bath soap, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, hair dryer.
The Castle provides: Work gloves, hand soap, and linens. There’s also a collection of random clothes that previous wwoofers have left behind (a sweater I forgot to pack is probably in there!).
Tip: A laundry machine and detergent are available for wwoofers to use. Everything gets hung to dry out on the clothesline.
>> Read about Music at the Castle, What Wwoofers Do When We’re Not Working!, and thoughts on My Personal Experience wwoofing at Castello di Potentino in October 2016, in Part 2 of this post.