May - June 2018
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  • Day14

    Road to Rome

    June 8, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

    I made a mistake in last post. It was Orvieto that we stopped at yesterday. Instead of tourist bus some of us ended up on a local bus with many stops before we got off, of course, at a church!
    We stayed our 2 nights in Rome in a former convent. When the elevator stops at floors a bell rings like a church bell. Have had trouble getting them to turn AC on and it is very warm, 28 C today.
    We left at 7:30 to tour the Vatican museum, the Sistine chapel, and St Peter’s Basclilliac had 50 minutes for lunch and then on to the Colosseum. I really liked it as it was easy to picture what it had been like. It helped if you had seen Gladiator or Ben Hur?? Better to be a gladiator than a slave because if you were a slave working on building the Colosseum you likely would last 6 to 12 months. Then to Forum and we were hot and tired by that time. It was 3 o’clock.
    Dinner at a local restaurant and good byes.
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  • Day13

    Road to Rone

    June 7, 2018 in Italy ⋅ 🌧 21 °C

    We left Florence and stopped at SAN Gimignano a town very high up on a hill. We took an elevator and then buses to get to top. We had lunch in an Italian restaurant, 4 courses. In this case I did like the antipasto. At other restaurants I didn’t like it. A creamy tomato sauce on some pasta and then pizza and briscotti. The chef made homemade pasta and chatted while we were eating, don’t think l will be making pasta anytime soon! The town was beautiful and had a gelato and shopped. Very unusual location for a village.
    When we got to Rome we had a walking guided tour with a local...very crowded and hawkers everywhere, selling anything you could think of...hats, watches, umbrellas, paintings, purses, selfie sticks. Threw some English money in the Trevi Fountain, that was a madhouse, so many people. Walked to eat from their. Very different appetizers...started with a huge anti pasta and then chick peas and beans, pasta, and the main course chicken or veal or pork, and finally desserts. Walked to bus and had a tour of Rome at night. Will add that to tomorrow
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  • Day12

    Road to Rome

    June 6, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    I missed a walking tour of Florence this morning. Had a very sore throat, which is much better now, and dropped my IPad on my bad toe and it was sore too. At 3 o’clock we left for San Gimignano, medieval towers from the Middle Ages on a hill in Tuscany. It is a UNESCO heritage sight. We got out of bus on way up and countryside was amazing. Had a gelato and shopped. Drove to an eating place and had the best group meal so far....deep fried olives, bruschetta, tapenade on bread, ravioli, and then brought in on a huge tray, big roast of beef. Lots of merriment ensued as there was bottles of different wines on table and they brought beer if one wanted it. We sang in bus on way home and acted like a bunch of teenagers. Enrico drove bus around traffic circle 3 times as we were singing. A couple of young girls 20 or 21 are on the bus. One is with her parents and her friend came with her. Very attractive and pleasant. The danced in the aisle to ABBA’s Dancing Queen!Read more

  • Day11

    Road to rome

    June 5, 2018 in Italy ⋅ 🌙 18 °C

    Left Venice in a water taxi to get back on our bus. Our bus driver’s name is Enrico and Phil praises him for being such a good driver and they work well together. Stopped at a rest Centre and took a picture for Ron of a cow and what we thought said Drink milk but said milk the cow...we ask Enrico. Then to Pisa. Much more to it than we thought. We had a local guide who was very humorous. Apparently people from Pisa did not like the Venetian or the Romans. Men selling cheap souvenirs mainly outside the walls. Phil said to watch for pickpockets. We stopped at Machiavella winery. He wrote The Prince away back when?Lots of wine tasting and some snacks....the view is from the winery. Arrived at hotel around 6 o’clock. A group of us tried to find a restaurant but ended up coming back to hotel....a very funky hotel. Little lights in ceiling and walls of bed part of room. Remember the coloured bathroom fixtures??Read more

  • Day10

    Road to Rome

    June 4, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    A walking tour of Venice at 8:30 led by a local guide and you could tell that she loves her city. It is so expensive to stay here that she moved to another island close by, Lido? She was very spry and fit and Phil told us she is 82. That’s what climbing all those steps does! We went on
    back streets and ended up in St Mark’s square. Then took a boat to glass making place. Beautiful. The bowl I liked was 600 Euros. Did spend your birthday money Pat and bought a pair of earrings. Had a bit of free time and then took a boat to Burano island, not so busy as Venice. Our tour guide, Phil has a tendency to ramble on and on which makes one very sleepy. A lot of history which is good but maybe too many details. He does speak Italian and French so is able to translate which he did at the winery yesterday. Had a late lunch....lots of fish dishes. Risotto with fish, lasagna with calamari which I don’t like but ate some of it, 4 shrimp and fruit and almond brittle.
    A little nap and at 7 o’clock John and I went out for gelato and more walking. I like gelato but not like you Pat.
    We have an early start tomorrow to get bags and us over to the mainland.
    Heather wondered about garbage....we could see and smell them removing garbage this morning.
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  • Day9

    Road to Rome

    June 3, 2018 in Italy ⋅ 🌙 22 °C

    Had a busy day leaving Innsbruck and driving to Venice. Stopped at a small winery Alba Rossa that makes prosecco which is sparkling wine which we think of as being sweet but John said it was dry. Lovely little place. It was their first English speaking group and there was lots of translating bu our tour guide who speaks Italian. They had made home made salami, many cubes of different kinds of cheeses, breads and what I think of as pinwheel fancy sandwiches with cream cheese and roasted peppers! Yummy. We got off the main road for quite awhile and was wonderful to see northern Italy countryside. Views were breathtaking but a picture never captures it. Bus dropped us off when we got to Venice and took water taxi to hotel in Venice. Our guide keeps impressing upon us the extra things we have on this trip and this is one of them “we are staying in Venice”.
    Had a gondola ride. A break and then a 4 course dinner and a ride in a special water taxi just for our group. It was impressive!
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  • Day8

    Road to Rome

    June 2, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Had a driving day from Lucerne to Innsbruck on Saturday with a short stop in Lichtenstein. Tiny little place with on Main Street and many tour buses. Got to Innsbruck and went for Tyrolean dinner and show. Yodeling and singing and dancing, a lot of foot stamping and leg slapping by the men and twirling by the women.Read more

  • Day7

    Road to Rome

    June 1, 2018 in Switzerland ⋅ ☁️ 13 °C

    We had a train and cable car ride up Mt.Stanserhorn this morning! Wow Sun was out some of the time and then clouds would roll in. Had hot chocolate of coffee with schnapps there. Went to a working dairy farm..60 or 70 acres...Swiss brown cows. She prepared cheese pie, like quiche but with just cheese, Swiss potatoes, salami, chocolate cake and apple strudel and drinks. Then a carriage ride around the town of Endelberg.
    We are divided into 3 groups to go to a local restaurant tonight. Weather has been phenomenal. They called for rain by noon and it has been a gorgeous day. 22C. The Swiss guard fought so gallantly to save the royal family ( a long time) ago an artist carved the lion in stone.
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