A Travellerspoint blog

Update Next Couple of Days

Not sure of when next free wi-fi

Did Bolonga today (had mozzarella p.cotta for brunch=small deep fried crumbed mozza & procuito, aka fat in a serviette, lol. Took pic, as you know I never eat stuff like that back home, but walking soo much, why not). Simone had to go into the office to see clients today, so took the bus, then 15min walk (local bus from their place doesn't go to train station), then train. Could have left @ 7am with Simone this morning but didn't get to bed til 12am, & as Simone said, no point going that early for Bolonga. Had sleep in, 9hrs sleep. Woo hoo, so needed it! Legs & feet sore last night (as they are every night, even wearing sneakers!, then they're fine in morning). Did approx. 8hrs walking yesterday, including 132 steep, spiral steps to the top of the clock tower, thankfully 3 floors. Coming down though, no stopping unless we got too dizzy. Started @ 10am in Venice, left Venice on train @ 7:30pm (missed 6:30 train as water taxi back from square was late, mmmm....stuck in Venice for another hr, boy oh boy, lol ; ) ), back to R/E @ 10pm, had to change trains. Long day as up @ 6am! Stopped for brunch-sat on bench to eat-had Calzone with mozza, procuito & fungi=mushrooms, afternoon coffee to go whilst sitting & waiting for gondolla ride : ), only €28 as combined=6 people, private is between €80-€100, & later a Spritz=sparkling wine with their red blood orange juice, which I drank standing up in the bar as didn't want to pay double to sit which is usual here. Now doing small load washing & have packed most stuff, then off to dinner & drinks tonight with Simone & his friends. Monia is at a school end of term social thing with the kids. Big accident on freeway, Simone was/still is stuck in traffic so stood @ round-about couple of sts from train station so Monia could quickly come & get me & drop me home. Simone said if strange men come up to me & say something, sorry but they may think I'm a prostitute. I said I'd kick them in the groin, Simone said, no, tell them €100, my responce, what! only €100, more like €1000, lol. Was in sneakers, t-shirt & 3/4 length pants, men driving passed were all really slowing down & smiling @ me. I thought Simone was joking! Who knows, maybe he was & it's the whole blonde Aussie thing. Even had a guy on a push bike as I was heading to dinner in Florence slowly riding beside me. Asked where I was from, me in a, on ya bike buddy tone (you know that's my, yeah, whatever. Well, couldn't really say to him, on ya bike buddy. Well, I could have, but he wouldn't have understood + he was already on it, lol!) Australia, he asked where, I said Sydney. He then said, aahhhh....that's why you're so beautiful. He then said, we're carnivors, me, now in my don't mess with this little black duck voice, which rarely comes out, whatever! He was starting to really piss me off riding beside me smiling, winking & stopping whilst I'm walking & trying to read the map to get to the restaurant. Up @ 6am for train @ 7:38am from Reggio to Milan, arrives @ 9:15. Look around Milan again & have brunch, then train from Milan @ 3:05pm to Ventimiglia Stazi (may see if I can change 1st class ticket for earlier train/s when I get there), arrives @ 7:07. Then another train from there @ 7:17 to Niece, finally arrive there @ 8:05pm. Check into Hotel, then dinner! Will get local map & ask which bus to Monaco (& Canns if I have time!) & find out what time for breaky. Go for morning swim, fingers crossed weather is ok, then shower, check-out, leave luggage, & go exploring around Niece & Monaco. Then back to train station (will time it on way to hotel) for 8pm overnight sleeper train to Paris, arriving in Paris @ 7am. Need to then get local train, which is then only a 3min walk to Hotel. Need to be @ Louvve Museum @ 9:30am for tour (Mona Lisa is there) which is approx. 25min walk along river from Hotel, may take bus there & walk back. Tour finishes @ 12pm, so back to Hotel to check in, shower then have rest of day/night to wander around Paris. Off for Paris full day tour the next day, with lunch @ the Eiffel Tower! Hope all's well back home. Not sure what was happening with weather, storm, last Tuesday. Had FB email from Renae saying boxing was cancelled that night as weather man Tim told everyone to stay home... Btw, Michelle, let Aunty Renie know, didn't find any heels here. They have heaps, but all too tall for me. As Simone said the other night, am I going to wear my 2nd floor shoes (my standard Aussie heels) lol. These, I would have been on the 4th floor, everyone here's so short. But, tell her she doesn't need to kick my butt back here, found some dress sandles, like she said Mum's were, feel like you're walking on clouds, sooo comfy : )

Posted by LisaNujin 11:17 Comments (0)

General Update

Today/Yesterday

Back @ Simone's from Florence. Simone's Dad picked me up from train station (7:50pm) as Simone's in France for work from this afternoon til tomorrow afternoon (he was in UK when I arrived, until 12am, so he had Steffano come & pic me up, who speaks perfect English). Thought he was picking me up where Simone dropped me off so wasn't looking in train station, then heard Lizza, walked straight passed him, lol. Having an early one tonight, only 5.5hrs sleep last night & started walking @ 10am today til 6pm, with only about an hour stop (bus to fake David [saw the real one + 2 fake ones] on top of hill, Gellato up there, quick coffee stops). Thankfully got espresso shot (1st class drinks trolley) on train from Florence to Bolonga, had to change to regional from there to Reggio, otherwise I would have fallen asleep! Legs & feet starting to hurt a bit today, think it was from all the stairs yesterday (up to Leaning Tower, approx 250, & to top of church, approx 100, lost count getting dizzy as spiral ones & double width of normal ones, getting smaller & smaller the higher you go. Have pics), & well, all the walking too! : ) 11 days, walked for the majority of all the days, bar 2=22hrs on plane & BBQ here. Half way through trip & have done everything thus far apart from Venice which is tomorrow (& Bolonga on Friday, which was spare day). More walking all day, lol...hence need an early night, + up @ 6am for 7am train, Monia's going to drop me off. Am glad Simone suggested I do Milan for the whole day, rather than just the stop on way to Niece, don't want to carry everthing around, they have lockers, but had no idea how large Milan is, can now take it easy for those 4hrs! Will be doing Gondola tomorrow, even if it is approx. €100/$140, Simone thinks that's the cost. Came up as I told him they wanted €100 for 1hr horse drawn cart ride through Rome. Need to do Gondola before canal rises & houses sink, although Simone said they are spending millions of euro to fix. All people on tours can't believe how much I'm doing whilst here, especially the amount of walking I'm doing on my day trips to Cities. My reply always, takes 22hrs to get here, so... Would love to come back to Sorrento some day (still fave place thus far) but want to do Greece which is next on the list, in about 2 years time, then Russia. Had a full on PMSL moment last night, well early this morning, by the time I checked in & ate (guy @ reception new place still open,until 1:30am for dinner!) etc, heading back to hotel. Not so at the time, but after. Will put in travel blog. You'll probably find some [maybe most ; ) ] of it boring, provided you read it, as I'm going to print it out & add it to the back of the album. Have been buying post cards too (only of the larger places, Rome, Florence etc) so I can seperate it town by town. Now up to around 930 pics with 5 short videos, all still on the same memory card, 16GB. Also have 8 & 4 cards with me. Have had dinner now & Giadia was showing me all her toys. I think she was telling me the names of all her dolls, too cute. Also cow (not sure what that was in Italian, but she said something, made moo noise, so I did the same, said Si, followed by moo), monkey (monkey noise etc as per Cow), sheep, moose (no idea with that noise but I copied her) & last but not least, Tigger, which is of course Tigger in both languages. Mattia & Giadia have learnt how to say goodnight and sweetdreams, way to precious, plus Giadia said my name is beautiful, gorgeous : ) Ok, that's me done for now, off to shower, organise stuff for tomorrow & bed. It's now 10pm, just starting to get dark & light insects (lol, as Simone calls them) have just come out. Only here for 1mth per year. The look on my face when I saw them, everyone laughed. As Monia's mother said, we have kangaroos & kolas, they have light insects. They move to quick to take pic, but hopefully before I leave can collect some in jar, as Simone & Mattia do, take pic then let them go. I told Simone they should put holes in top of jar & use them as the kids night light. Nite nite...

Posted by LisaNujin 13:34 Comments (0)

Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow

Update

Yesterday, today & tomorrow (as per FB update @ 1:30pm, free wi-fi @ pub dropped out).Headed from Reggio to Pisa, spent all day there, then onto Siena last night (hotel room upgrade!). I now know why Truffles are sooo expensive, apart from prod cost, had couple of shavings (local) on my pasta last night, they were having their own private party in my mouth : ) Soooo good! Was going to do hot springs this morning, only 1 bus per hour after 11am. Reception sent me to bus stop outside La Lizza Cafe' lol, (now I know why Uncle Bruno, & Aunty Renie kind of, still calls me Lizza=Lisa in Aust) but only picks up from train station. Went back to hotel, after carrying backpack for 3hrs this morning, after sprint to train station but too late, with change of clothes, toiletries etc, (they have showers @ springs), her comment "that's strange". Mmmm, really! No apology, especially when I told them that was the 1 thing I wanted to do here, oih! Yep, said "firetruck!" after missed it from station. You know I don't swear much, well firetruck really isn't but...so you know I was not impressed... Hot day here again today, approx 30deg, so hot springs maybe not so good, lol. Beach weather, the whole time I've been here (hopefully will be in Niece as staying across the rd from beach), between 28-30 everyday, apart from afternoon in Ana-Capri! Changed out of swimmers @ hotel, now have sports bag (purchased yesterday) with all stuff for 3 days with me as heading to Montalcino (wine/truffle country) @ 2 to 7pm. Train to Florence (there tonight & all day tomorrow) leaves @ 7:17 or 8:17 & takes 1.5hrs from here. Hoping to get 7:17, about 15min walk from bus. Would be nice to get more than 6hrs sleep. Have only done more than that twice since here, one was 7 & another 8. Apart from that between 5-6hrs a night. Have also been walking, on average, 7hrs a day. Have no idea how I'm still energetic, but so many things to do & see. Now having vodka & coca light (diet coke), tall glass of course : ), waiting for tour bus. Back to Simone's late tomorrow night, Venice Thursday & probably Bologna & markets there on Friday, then dinner & drinks with Simone's friends again that night. Sat morning (7:30) leave for Niece! Hope all's well back home. Travel blog lagging very far behind, lol. Will do when I can. xoxJust back from tour, 7:30pm, another late night by the looks of it. Last night, by the time I got here, checked in, showered etc & headed out for dinner, ate @ 10:30pm, bed just after 12:30pm then up this morning @ 6:30am! Country was so beautiful, have btl wine, truffle jam & truffle savoury spread! Lol re savoury, will have to read travel blog, well, when I get the chance to update. Had 5 glasses of wine(1st 2 were approx double size shot & 3rd in small wine glass by themselves, 4th & 5th 1/4 large wine glass with nibbles) & a shot of Grappa (48%), the smell alone was enough to get tipsy on & you know what I'm like with my vodka! It's barrelled here for 2yrs!! Table was set under wine cellar, very pretty, food was home made bread, their extra virgin olive oil, local salami (which I never usually eat but was sooo nice, or maybe just after effects of 3 wines, lol), procuitto & cheese. Then had biscotti after Grappa. I got in trouble from Mario, 82yr old funny & very cheeky owner (does not look his age at all, I said must be Grappa, who kept hugging me, in a gradpa way, & holding my hand to lead me along. Although 1st time he linked my arm then held my hand, he waved & said ciao ciao to everyone else as we headed to downstairs cellar). Have pics. The btl I bought-red "2009, Rosso di Montalcino", 3rd one, made me feel warm (think rugged up on a rainy day) which will go so well with Pasta, would save for my bday this year but it's smack bang in the middle of summer. I'm sure I'll find a special occasion in winter, maybe when I move into my new appt next year, perfect for my first cooked meal in new kitchen, which of course, will have to be pasta! Only €8/$11.20, tour cost was only €33/$53.20, based on exchange last time I checked. Stopped @ small town first, then winery which was established by the 1st Pope of Rome & in his family from 1450-1950, then Mario's family til now. Then onto Monestry Church, didn't take pics inside as no one to ask + could hear them chanting/humming in other room, which was built in 1118 & finally Montalcino, little town where I bought truffle spreads & paid €4 to head to top of castle for spectaular views! Would have done travel diary on way to Florence, as per usual on train, shame they don't have free wi-fi, but alas now on bus. Headed off to train station, at least it was down hill this time, 8 x escalters, but train station didn't tell me that when I arrived last night, said to the right then straight, so up the hill I went with 3 x days stuff in back pack, after carrying it around Pisa all day. Checked earlier how long on way back to Piazza from Hotel, walking up all those, yes I quick walked to see how long if bus did get back here @ 7. As eveyone says here (lol with the little old ladies as they say it & put their hand to their forehead) mama mia! Now double mama mia!! Train cancelled, one to Empoli, where I could have changed, running 50mins late, next train to Florence @ 9:25pm. Station then organised bus to Florence Train Station, told approx 1hr. Simone sent me msg, did I hop on train or was I too pissed & fell asleep on tour bus back or @ train station, lol! I think he's done tours here prior! I told him, called, it's official, Town of Siena hates me, I must have done something bad here in a prior life...lol. As Simone said, & I agree, makes for another interesting travel experience/story. Can now lol as on bus heading to Florence. Simone confirmed just over 1hr, so hopefully should get there around 9:40pm, Hotel is approx 10mins walk from station. Too bumpy to write in travel diary, when wi-fi drops out can keep typing & will post when it reconnects (doing copy & paste to draft msg as back up). Florence hotel has free wi-fi, made sure of that when I booked it the other night! A lot closer to Sienna than Reggio. Rather than heading back to Reggio tonight then back to Florence tomorrow morning. Hopefully they might have free wi-fi on the sleeper to Paris, as leave Niece @ 8pm, arrive Paris next day @ 7am. If not, will up date travel diary (reminder notes/places/lol moments etc) then start typing travel blog updates in msgs, take in views, eat etc. Asked out for dinner again tonight, pretty cute too, lol. Yeah, finally....in Florence @ station, 10:40pm, had to drop people off for Empoli train line too! Just checked-in, (bugger shower, will have after dinner as now after 11pm) heading out for dinner now. Europe suns out until around 9pm, doesn't start to get dark until around 10:00pm, so very strange eating dinner in broad day-light. Buffet breaky @ 7:30am & have local map so can/will sort out tomorrows day @ dinner. Will get up around 7:30am tomorrow, sooo much to do in my one day here. Ciao!

Posted by LisaNujin 14:36 Comments (0)

Europe Travels

Day by Day Events

Ok, I'll try & diarise as much as possible now (helping to set up for BBQ in an hour, currently 10:45am here), then keep adding when I have the time. Am doing so much whilst here, have been keeping a little travel diary, well note book. Washing is in the machine, first wash since arriving. Those who know me well know I try to travel light. Anyway, packed smal suitcase, eveyone (Simone & Monia's family & friends) are all shocked & keep saying is that it! Even guy at Syd airport asked me is that all when I checked it in & asked / confirmed how long I was going for. Weighed in @ 12.8kgs. Packed just over a weeks worth of clothes, couple pairs of shoes & toiletries. Always had the intention to buy sports bag whilst here to put purchases in that, plus means I didn't/haven't had to lug a big suitcase around. Also have my backpack, with combo locks on them, for my days out. Emerits luggage = 30kg check-in & 7kg carry-on, so can fit extra x2 of what I came with. Am typing all of this with my phone, so any typos etc...& I don't use abbreviated text, that would make for some interesting lol moments I'm sure, believe in typing word for word, keeps my brian / spelling in check etc. Ok, will put entries for days now. Hope all's going well back home & you're all good. Btw, checked Canterbury weather, rain 6-17 deg... Here, clear blue sky, averaging from 28-30deg everyday, no rain at all, apart from the 1 day in Capri /Ana-Capri. Didn't start till after doing the Blue Grotto, one we left there & headed to Ana-Capri : )

Day 1/2- Emerites flight was great, food so good, 3 course for every meal. Breakfast was @ 8am, boarded @ 6am, Lunch @ 6:30pm Syd time lol! But had snacks in between. Didn't get much sleep, about 6.5hrs, watched movies rest of time, The Descendants & I Don't Know How She Does It. Landed in Dubai @ 8:20pm, Sat 26th, Syd time, 14hrs 20mins on plane. 34deg in Dubai on landing. Humidity was shocking, in the airport! Hits you like a brick wall, very hard to breath for first couple of mins. Didn't have time to do anything, apart from a quick coffee as Dubai a/p in very long & narrow, would have taken me approx. 20mins to get to their duty free shops / wi-fi etc, apart for couple of coffee shops close to where I disembarked & the to reboard. Plus I only had 15mins until check-in for 2nd leg of flight. Coffee was 16D, our $4.50, same size as large cappaccino back home. Sun was shinning, about 5:10pm there, 10:10pm Syd.

I'm back... Monia: machina finito, Me: grazie. Started to peg on airer, Monia's Mother, doing washing also, started talking to me in Italian, then pointed, coat hangers! Me: si, grazie. Exactly what I do @ home :) Started hanging clothes on airer, again she said something then took my clother & walked off. I followed, makeshift clothes line in other garage, lol. Actions speak louder than words, especially in a foreign country. Me: grazie, grazie!

Ok, now off to help set-up for bbq. Takes sooo long typing from my phone, rather than a keyboard... Shall pick-up where I left off, not much re days events, later, lol! Btw, am not going to bother checking for typos / correct grammer, so scusi...

BBQ now finished, 7hrs later... 1/5th of a cow for steak, same of a pig for sausages, cooked in open fire. Drinks=wine, vodka (absolut of course), single malt whiskey, liquor, digestive peach liquor, beers, home made liquor (similar to anasi), desert=cheesecake, fruit tarts... And of course, espresso coffee shots!

Anyway, back on plane, another 5.5hrs to Rome. Thought I'd try & get some more sleep, nup, drinks cart started through aisle, pre-dinner drinks not long after take-off. So, about 6.5hrs sleep in past 36hrs! Had 2 small btls of wine thinking that would help me get to sleep after dinner, no such luck, over tired. Eyes sore & red + as what I now call, airplane cankles! Legs swollen, as well as feet, even though I kept getting up & walking, plus stomach. I though possibly from sitting on butt for that long, but was told it happens too. Really weird feeling, swollen toes etc, trying to walk. Took about 2 days to go away, even with drinking ltrs of water & walking on average 7hrs a day site seeing
.

There was an older guy on the plane (couple beside me were from Penrith) who runs a tour company in Hunter, lives in Katoomba, his name, Nigel Death, glad we wern't next to him. Met him on one of my walks through the plane. The shocked look on the Italian guys face when he said his surname, priceless!

Finally reached Rome, found airport transfer person. Talk about a hoon! I the discovered everyone in Rome drives that way. No seatbelts, I had mine on, no indicators, in & out of lanes, overtaking on opposite side of road, hand always on horn beeping, insaine! By the time I checked into hotel, was around 10.30pm, local time. Went to coffee shop around the corner, as per entry earlier-Ray's Dad, lol. In bed @ 12:30am, wake up call for 5:30am.

Tour company mix up, they had Parker Hotel for pick-up but not with my name, Connie!?!. Anyway, was picked up in mini-van & taken to tour company to get on the tour bus. No coffee @ Hotel, too early, none in room, & coffee shop was closed, so one of the tour guys went & got me a coffee from around the corner (because I'm beautiful, lol). Then on our way to Pompei, gorgeous weather, around 29degs. Stopped @ coffee shop along the way for toilet break / coffee. Then onto Naples for walk around approx. 1.5hrs. Weirdest public toilet experience, (oh, all unisex here, no toilet seats, rim is about 1.5cms thick!) put in .50euro, door opens, floor wet, so try squatting on a urinal type thing with a backpack, classic lol, then push button for toilet paper, can only push once per visit, 2 sheets came out. Push button on door, door opens, then closes, then toilet flushes. You then push the button to get your money back, & of course, no money back! Thankfully they're not all like that here, & I have been walking into resturants & using theres, but still, all unisex. Naples was very pretty, lol, tour guide said that the building, tall, narrow, see through roof, they call viagra, as it's pointy with a round top which gets very hot! Have pics (600 already, 3 x short videos also).

Onto Pompei, ruins were soooo big. Walked approx 3hrs to see all around. Very eerie feeling, absolutly gorgeous views, buildings (well, whats left of them) & picture perfect day, really! Have some breathtaking photos which I will blow up & frame... Stopped for lunch, drinks menu, lol, took pic, wtf! Then had free time to look around the tourist markets, drinks etc. The lemons there are huge, almost the size of rockmelons, bizzare. Pure fruit drinks sooo nice & sweet. From there, group was split up for those of us onto Sorrento that night. Was myself, Fiona from Nowra, Bek from Penrith, Matt from Stafford Brissy & Barney & Dessy, husband & wife also from Penrith, lol, all Aussies.

Arrived in Sorrento, such a beautiful place... Checked-in, showered, down for buffet dinner then took the free shuttle bus to town.

Sitting outside, we all are, typing this, it's 9:20pm, just had earthquake. Weirdest feeling. Felt like someone pulling/pushing on chair. Or, like a headspin... All ok, lasted maybe 10secs! No damage here... Ok, am off with Simone to get Gellato...

Posted by LisaNujin 01:45 Comments (0)

Non-FB friends

Update (Wi-fi in park)

Just finished dinner, pizza & mascaponi, now sitting on swing in park (free wi-fi in park!) in R/E whilst Mattia & Giadia are playing on slides, under the watchful eyes of Simone & Monia!

Posted by LisaNujin 13:15 Comments (0)

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