Camilla & Bobby's Quest For Pizza
This must be one of the most beautiful places on the planet. It's like we've gone back 1000 years in time. This is truly where pizza came from!
We drove to Bellagio, had to put the car on a little ferry after driving though one storybook town after another, it's true what they say, the Italian drivers must have a death wish..crazy! Our hotel looks like Marie Antoinette might have stayed here.
Next stop, Lake Garda!
It's hard to believe this is a real place, a real town. It's surrounded by a huge turquoise lake,
that has the same color as the Caribbean seas, the sunsets are majestic against the terra-cotta buildings. The food is delicious, the people are warm and we haven't had a bad bottle of wine yet. Wish you were all here, put this place on your to do list!
PS- Found nice parcel on the water, the place has potential considering it's a 2000 year old pad. We're still looking..
Sunrise this morning in Sirmione
This trip seems like it's going by so quickly, can't believe we board the ship today. It was a little scary dropping off the car yesterday, it felt like we were driving to the edge of the earth, all the roads and train tracks just came to an end, then you see this majestic city rising out of the water.
I pulled the car to the side of the highway in front of the Hertz sign
and this cranky lady told me that I was late and could be charged an extra day! I didn't know we had a
be back, I said,
"How late am I?" she said"15 minutes"! I asked if there was a grace period, she said there is a, 30 minute
grace period, I guess she just wanted to see me squirm. We didn't get charged,
Then we had to drag all our luggage onto a Vaperetto,
(water bus) we got off at the wrong stop, only one stop past our stop. This nice meatball said,
"it's-a just-a five-a minute-a walk-a' " they really do add "-a" to every English word.
We proceed to drag our 160 pounds of luggage though what seemed like a maze, there are
no straight streets in Venice, if you want to go from point 'a' to point 'b' you need to snake
though all these tiny alley type streets, then there's a million bridges
some small, some not so
small and some huge, but the worst part is that no matter what size bridge it is, they all have
steps that climb high so the Gondolas can fit under, (do forget the guy driving stands on it).
What a bitch getting the luggage over each one. Camilla would wait on one side while I schlepped
one set of bags over to the other side then we'd switch sides leaving all the bags unattended
for a few seconds, we must have looked like a circus act to the locals. The lesson learned here...
get off at the correct Vaporetto stop. We walked (more like dragged ourselves) through
Saint Marc's Square, another movie set come to life, you put your arms out like
Jesus and a hundred pigeons land on you, what's up with that
Just then the giant bells in the tower started ringing really loud non stop, we looked up at them a saw
that the tower was full of tourists, way up there with the giant clanging bells,
the locals all have a grin
as if they're all in on a private joke. Finally found our hotel, what a beautiful sight. We're in a small
square and our room has wooden shutters on the window, they open like in some Italian movie from
the 40's and we look out to see everyone on the square looking at us from their windows, "Bon Gorno Senora!"
We finally found the ice bucket!
It's now 7:30 am, Camilla's sleeping like a baby, wish I could do that. Think I'll go find some coffee, oh yea, the coffee here is so thick it has a foam head on it and you'd be smart not to be too far from the toiletto!
Today we get to lug all our 'stuff' over to the cruise ship. We'll find our cabin, probably have some lunch (included with the cruise) -side note: Venice is very expensive, we were shocked to see that in a decent restaurant, soup is 15-25 euros! Madonna! Interesting, the Internet here at the hotel is only 2 euros a day but the soup is 30 bucks, on the ship the soup is included but the Internet is 30 bucks a word. Madonna! Needless to say there probably wont be a lot of communication in the next two weeks unless we can find the Internet cafe's Cami found in various countries we'll visit.
Here's our ship, the Summit, quite large, see if you can make out Camilla standing in front of it.
All & all, we're having the time of our lives although it seems like the fastest 3 weeks ever. We find humor and beauty in everything we see and do. We're eating our way across Europe, we've never eaten as much as we are on this trip and amazingly we aren't gaining weight, must have something to do with the 10 miles and days we walk not to mention the 160 pounds of luggage. We'll be in Croatia next. We'll let you know how the Pizza is there.
As I write this I'm looking out of my balcony which is beautiful shining sea as far as you can see with the sun dancing like diamonds on the water. Mesmerizing.
I met a girl in Turkey named Camela, just as sweet as Camilla!
..let's me ride her too!
Gunaydin, (Turkish for 'Good-day')
Dobro Jutro, (Croatian)
Bon journo, (Italy)
Bon Jour, (France)
Wednesday in Greece we avoided the tours and took a train with the locals, (1 Euro) to the Acropolis, what a trip, (felt like we were in the Star Wars bar, we could swear we heard that music playing in the background). Definitely the way to go, much better than the 75 Euro hot cab ride through all the traffic.
I got to meet a friend, Sakis from Face Book, face to face, he let me try Ouzo
a popular drink in Greece. Very nice! It comes out of the bottle clear and when it hits the
ice-cubes it turns white! Madonna!
Thursday in Turkey, we hung out in the afternoon in a city, Ephesus, that was built like 800 years BC...and they had plumbing!!
We walk so much that for the first time in my life, I took a nap in the afternoon, very European...a first for me, (not Camilla, she's European although she'll be quick to tell you she's American now).
Second day in Turkey we went shopping in what felt like a scene from Indiana Jones, the Turks bargain with you weather you want to or not, we had a carpet salesman follow us for three blocks trying to sell us a carpet we didn't want, they're very kind people though and never show any kind of animosity if you decide not to buy.
We're almost a week into the cruise with another week to go. We're as far east and south as we'll be for the whole trip, tomorrow we head back west and north which will be kind of nice because it's so freaking hot here and the TV is Saudi TV, (not that there's anything wrong with that, just lot's of bad mustaches, even on the women). We're bringing back lots of Tahin Helvasi!
We're looking forward to Naples but not before a day at sea to get there, we can use the rest, we'll go to Capri then, on Monday Rome, after that Florence, then Nice another day at sea and finally Barcelona.
Our senses are beautifully overwhelmed from all the amazing sights and experience. Heading up to the pool bar for a KettleOne martini, Camilla's new drink is the Appletini, all the bartenders smile when she goes by...why is that???
Saturday-Woke up this morning to an intense thunder and lightning storm, 8 am it was pitch black outside and felt like we were in a Typhoon! We were back in calm seas and blue skies by 10. We're somewhere south of Italy's boot heel but no land in site.
Love to you all from the other side of the planet.
We're in Rome, we were here since yesterday, Camilla and I walked all over the city and saw everything there is to see. We must have walked 10 miles in 80 degree heat.
Tonight we leave for Florence and the next day Nice then Friday a day at sea and Saturday this amazing trip come to an end in Barcelona.
September 30, '09
To say it's been an amazing trip just doesn't seem to serve what we've experienced justice. We're in Tuscany, Florence, (port of Lavorno) Italy at the moment, from our balcony we have a great view of a ship building facility and a half built ship in it, fascinating!
We're getting off the ship soon to see the sights, smell the aromas and taste their Pizza, after all this is our "Quest for Pizza." Tomorrow we'll be in Nice, France.
After one more day at sea,
we will arrive in Barcelona. We'll spend the day in Barcelona,
as if you can experience Barcelona in a day. We'll have to come back for a proper visit. Saturday night we'll fly back to Amsterdam, a late meeting with the Alessi Brothers manager and good friend, beautiful Angelique who has watched over us on this trip and made sure everything went as smooth as silk, everyone should have an Angel like this.
Then Sunday finally, our trip home.
We know there's a fur ball (our cat, Bubba) who will be very happy to see us, we're so grateful to Camilla's best friend, Melanie for giving him the attention only a mother could give, making sure not only that he's fed and watered but also that his kitty litter box doesn't have too many 'clumps' in it, occasionally having to talk him down from the roof and generally making sure he doesn't feel abandoned the three and a half weeks Camilla's been here, I don't even know if he'll remember me, I've been gone for six weeks but Billy did tell me that when he went over to the house one day Bubba was meowing so loud that it was almost a scream, (selfishly I like to think that he thought Billy was me).
Camilla has always said she could live in a cardboard box with me, well living in this stateroom for two weeks is probably the closest we'll get to that and I must say we're still soul mates.
What we take away from this amazing Quest for Pizza, with all it's beauty mixed with sadness, and wonder seeing the kingdoms and civilizations that rose and fell like sandcastles,.. life is best served with someone you love.
We look forward to seeing all the ones we love on the other side of the pond.