19 September 2007

Days 6 & 7: Bella Cinque Terre

I apologize in advance for this being short; the only internet place in Monterosso is wicked expensive. Thanks for all your comments...I guess being bossy works:-). My responses are at the end of this little entry.

We finally left Florence yesterday afternoon. Pebbles was a little sad - she really loved Florence. It is a great place to walk around independently...once you learn the grid system you can find almost anything, and I think she really liked that! We set on our way, in the rain, to Monterosso, the most northern town of the Cinque Terre. The ride was not close to as plush as the ride had been to Florence, and we couldn't find the first class car, which meant no airconditioning. We were greated by the bright blue ocean and slightly overcast skies when we arrived; it was absolutely beautiful.

This must be the home of Foccaccia or something, because it is everywhere. And it is delicious. We had a drink and some bread, then walked around the town. After a while it was time to eat dinner (yes, more food...it is hard to keep your calories up with all the walking you do here!), and then Pebs decided to walk around the town a bit. She is becoming quite the independent traveller!

This morning I set off on a walk through the CT. It is a 9km walk, and I had heard some of it was difficult, so with her cold, Pebs decided to visit the towns another way. Very smart decision. I had no idea the hike would be so tough. The path from Monterosso to Vernazza, then Vernazza to Corniliga was really difficult. It was hard to do it with healthy lungs, much less ones filled with phlegm. I met lots of people along the way, and avoided many with their stupid walking sticks, as well. These paths are super narrow, and these folks have these ski stick like things, take up the whole path, and won't move out of the way for anything. Here I am on the ledge, while they are taking their sweet time, making sure their stick is firmly planted. Ridiculous.

About 5 hours later, I arrived at Riomaggiore, completely exhausted but in awe of the beauty here. I took the train back to the hotel, and Pebs followed in shortly after. She had done some of the walk (the part she did was really beautiful), and took the train to the other cities. She just loved it all. We headed to the beach for a while, I swam in the Med, which felt really good after such a long day!

Apparently Pebbles found an American restaurant here in town, so we're heading there for dinner. I should be signing off now...but let it be known, if you want a lucrative business venture, set up an internet shop in Monterosso that doesn't charge inane rates (1Euro for the first 10 minutes, 10cents for each minute after).

To Nico...thanks for the Grappa clarification. I was going by what the guy at San Donato told us, and he pointed to a pile of skins and said they were for grappa. That's as much as I knew about the stuff! To Christine - I thought they were a reaction to something, too, but the distribution of them, and our tour guide telling us about tiger mosquitoes, lends me to believe they are bites. I'll try to stop at a Farmacia on my way back to the hotel...although at this point they look more ugly than they feel (and I didn't realize I had so many on my face!). Thanks again, y'all!

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