Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Hello from Stresa, Italy

Well, here we are in Stresa, a beautifully posh little town in Italy's Lake District. We are only a block or so from the shore of Lago Maggiore under sunny skies.

Today we cruised out to three gorgeous little Borromean islands to see two palaces, a bird sanctuary (where I got to pet a white peacock), and amazing botanical gardens with plants from all over the world.

Tomorrow we are taking a train to the Cinque Terre, which are a chain of five clifftop villages hanging out over the Mediterranean and staying in that area for three nights.

This last while we have been staying in Venice---don't let anybody ever tell you it isn't worth going there. We stayed on a tiny street and woke up to the bells of San Pantalon every morning. We could look out our window and actually see the bells rocking back and forth in the tower. Good alarm clock.

Anyway, hopefully I'll make a few more posts in the next two weeks but the days are full.

Well, except for the time relaxing on terraces with Peronis and limoncello. :)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

In Roma!

Hello everybody!

This is a quick blog post from an internet cafe on our street in Rome, Italy. It is a short post because I am in Rome and there is a lot to do!

Today we walked through the Forum, saw the Colosseum, ate gelato, drank from baroque fountains, and saw priceless works of art in the Palazzo Barberini.

And tomorrow we are all off to Ostia Antica!

I am taking lots of pictures''you will see them when I get back!


Sunday, May 06, 2007

In Which Spider Girl Packs Her Bags and Stampedes Some Buffalo

Two more days till we leave for Italy.

My little red suitcase, Ricardo, is nearly packed. Italian phrasebooks and other bits of travel paraphanelia litter the coffee table.

This last week or so has been a mish-mash of work (both jobs), going-away parties for co-workers, forays into old bookshops for reading material on the plane, gardening, visiting friends, and trying out new and exciting brunch menus with Tai.

Tai, one of my intrepid travelling companions, has actually been staying at my house since Friday. For her, the vacation has already begun. Well, at least, I'm hopeful that staying at my place can be regarded as a holiday of sorts. I dunno...apparently I clank around in the morning rather a lot.

Today, we decided to spend the last of the weekend before we leave being a Tourists in Our Own Town, which is decidedly much less expensive than trotting off to Europe.

We spent today's rainy afternoon travelling down random rural roads lined with daffodils and sheep and trees in blossom.

There was also mysterious cabalistic signs to a "Fortress" out there on a dead-end road in the boonies, which led to a discussion about naming one's house. I asked for suggestions to name my own house and my witty friend suggested calling it "Bob". The Villa Bob. No, it really doesn't have the ring to it I'm looking for. I'm open to suggestions.

We also came upon some smaller stone cousins to the Easter Island giant heads. My, travelling in my own town is certainly broadening! :)

AND we saw seven deer and one rock shaped like a deer. Does that count?

AND, we saw a herd of stampeding buffalo.

They weren't stampeding, really, until I got quite close to their fence though. Very impressive, what with the thundering hooves and snorting and all. They were running in the other direction from me, by the way. Apparently buffalo don't care for my sort, although later on Tai and I met some cows that pratically begged for their photos to be taken....

Pictured in this post are the handful of buffalo that were cool with me.

All in all, a good day for local tourism.....

Tomorrow I work a half day, and then I come home and run around madly doing last minute things (and when I say run around madly I AM alotting some time for a good read in a bubble bath), and then the next day the three of us head down to Nanaimo to go over to Vancouver on the sea-plane (I'm going to like that!), and then to the main airport for the flight to Rome via Amsterdam.

Right. I'm tired. I'm rambling. I'm getting this random-train-of-thought vibe as I write tonight.

Buona sera to you all!