Thursday, May 22, 2008

Good Morning, Italy

Buon Giornio.

Landed in Milan, Italy bright and early this morning. It’s amazing to fly over the Alps – all the sharp edges coated in snow, shining in the early morning sun. What a sight to see when you first wake up.

Amazingly, no luggage was lost (on DH and my very first trip, mine was lost between London and Milan – I wore the same clothes for 3 days, washing my unders in the bathroom each night). Unfortunately, it was too early for any restaurants to be open and we had about an hour and a half ‘til we could rent the car. So we sat until a snack bar opened, and just waited. I did manage to take some pictures of the Alps through the windows…

Considering the car was smaller than your average American car, it was amazing, but we easily fit in all our luggage and all of us, without being horribly cramped.

It’s a nice, straight drive across northern Italy from Milan to Venice. The scenery is gorgeous – trees in bloom; fields of orange-red poppies & other unidentified wildflowers; vineyards, big & small; hills; grand churches and fortresses; old, abandoned, and collapsing buildings; the colors of the buildings – yellows, reds, oranges. The weather was perfect – 70s and clear.

And the places we pass – Bergamo, Verona, Vicenza, Padova (Padua). Makes me think of Shakespeare…

Mind, the Autostrade is not for the faint of heart. Stay out of the left lane unless you plan on going faster than everyone else. And by faster, I mean in excess of 130 km/hr. Well in excess.

Since our cruise was leaving the next morning, we chose not to stop and see the sites, but head straight on to Venice. I think we made it in about 3 hours. We checked into the same hotel DH and I have stayed at on both previous trips, and then we took the kids to dinner at the same restaurant we’ve eaten at before, too. Oh, the town we stayed in was Quarto d’Altino. You can find it on Google Earth, if you’re so inclined.

Side note on Italian dining – Italian food is pretty much it. You do not see Mexican/Spanish, Chinese, American, British, German, or any other type of restaurant very often. And you can only take so many lunches and dinners of pizza/pasta before it becomes unappealing. I do have to say though that I really like true Italian pizza – the crust is thin and crispy with just a light layer of sauce and cheese. And they put all sorts of toppings on them – including some that do not seem appetizing at all. I do love the grilled veggie pizzas – grilled eggplant, zucchini and bell peppers. Yummy. Really puts you off Pizza Hut, et al.

Anyway, back to the story…
After dinner, it was back to the hotel and bed. But not before MC managed to break the rollaway bed. Sheesh. Just one more reason not to vacation with kids.
Sadly, DH and I were just too worn out from the travelling to muster enough energy for any action at all.

Next: On the ship and leaving Venice.


john said...

And what to say about Italian ice ?
Shakespeare: I was always interested in the spanking in "The taming of the screw."

Robin said...

Never tire of gelato and granitas -- had a perfect lemon granita in Verona. DH liked the mint.

Now there was someone who truly needed a spanking :D