Soaking in Italian Sun

We’ve been out and travelling again. This time out for two weeks, on road, back to Italy. We did the same routes we did two years ago. Maybe it seems boring and stupid to do the same trip we did two years ago, but this is how much we love Italy.

I’m typing this on my iPad while Jos steps on the accelerator of the vehicle heading back to the Netherlands. We are now 530km away from home and about 650km away from our last stop; Venice. At this point, I started missing the days we spent in Tuscany, strange because the last trip we fell in love with the Garda Lake in Arco. This time, I feel a lot for Tuscany, i cannot explain. Perhaps the 2 hours i spent shopping at the Prada outlet at Montarvachi or the half hour at the other luxury outlet mall in Florence? It could also be the wonderful time we have at the campsite, swimming and being bored, watching the landscape from the terrace, enjoying the sun, the smell of the morning dew and the sound of the chirping birds. Surely not the creepy crawlies that freak me out and left my hair standing. I only wish these campsite take a little more effort in keeping the crawlies away.. But then again, that’s what you get camping. But we like the life of campers, living a life out of busy towns but in the suburbs.

The most beautiful sights I’ve seen thus far was the sights of really old couples doing the things a young couple would. My heart warms each time I sees them.

While in Florence, every evening we would get a drink at the cafe before dinner. On the 2nd evening, a old lady sat on her wheelchair sipping coffee with her dear husband. She’s plump wearing a floral dress and I also noticed her feet was somewhat swollen. But otherwise, she looks a healthy old lady. Not frail at all. The same night I went for my shower at the shared bath-rooms, their caravan was parked just outside the rows of bath-rooms. The lady still in wheel chair, eating her dinner with her dear husband. I felt instantly sweet that a couple at their age would go on an adventure together despite the disabilities of the wife. And being disabled also means the dear husband has to be assigned to do everything. And trust me, camping is not like a holiday staying in a hotel. You have to clean your own cave. Doing it together is fun, doing it alone must be Love.

While in Fusina, the campsite we stayed does not have a swimming pool, even sadder to realise it is no where near to a beach (not within walking distance.) But the strange thing is I’ve spotted many people in swimwear. So I demanded “there has to be a beach somewhere.” But Jos have asked the reception and was told no.

One evening, we took a walk making a nice round. Near to where the jetty is, where the boat arrives to ferry people from Fusina to Venice. There, many people lies on their beach mat in bikini n swimming trunks just to get the tan. It is at crazy 36 degree!! It is amazing how much these people love the sun despite not having any water within reach to soak and cool them down. In fact, the warmth was a little too much for me. When I start feeling the sun burning my skin, I would pull out my sunscreen SPF 50 to block the sun out. At this moment, I saw an old man in swim trunks rubbing sunscreen on the back of his bikini dressed wife. They must be 80 at least. I like to take a picture of the sight but really didn’t wanna be rude. It was such a lovely sight. I melt not by the sun but by how blessed are people that grow old together and are still able to do things young people does. So much love, so much passion.

And then from where I stand… I spotted another old couple holding hands inching away from the jetty… This, in my opinion, is love.

20130623-224717.jpg

Besides the lovely couples, here are some lovely views of The places we’ve been..

20130623-230817.jpg

20130623-230828.jpg

20130623-230933.jpg

20130623-230953.jpg

Till next time! 🙂

Advertisements

There is no World without Verona Wall.

I’ve been really busy of late trying to finish up a scrapbook that I’m presenting to Jos as a Christmas Present. And each page brings my mood up higher because of the many flashes of memory that every single photo brought back.

One of the pages on the scrapbook that I’d particular like was a page I did on our trip toVeronalast summer. It had brought back so many memories and I’d thought I should blog about it in this post.

I have always been a fan of Shakespeare and his popular play on Romeo & Juliet. I’d been so crazy over the way it is written that I can recite most of the popular sayings of the play. Sometimes, I’d even use the way it’s being said during my conversation with friends for fun. Romeo & Juliet was written based onVerona. As such, I’ve always dream about visitingVerona.

Some years ago, I’ve also watched a movie – Letters to Juliet, starring Amanda Seyfried, I love the movie so much, I told myself I’m definitely going to visitVeronasome day, one day. I even spoke to one of my Italian friend about it. So can you imagine my joy when Jos said we were going toVeronalast summer? It was like the best present he ever gave me. Its like a dream come true!

Although I’ve blog about how disappointed I was when I realize that the Juliet’s Garden in Verona isn’t really the real balcony the play was written on, I was still determine to see Juliet’s Balcony for whatever it takes. 

The day trip toVerona Town was one beautiful one. The weather was at its high of 34 degrees Celsius, hot and sunny with a light cool breeze. We parked the car at one of the parking garage, put on our sunglasses and hat (ok, just mine hat) and take a stroll with a map in hand.Italyis such a beautiful country, the minute our car lays its wheel onto the Italian ground; I awed at every angle the beauty of the historic architectures and the natural beauty of the scenery. I did not stop snapping on my camera to make sure I capture the beauty my eyes set on so that the memory will stay with me forever. 

The first popular spot we walked past was Ponte Pietra, which is Italian for Stone Bridge. It is also known as the oldest bridge inVerona which symbolizes the history of the city. Ponte Pietra has been destroyed several time by floods and rebuilt time and time again. Today, the bridge looks steady and glorious and definitely did not lose its beauty.

 

We walked on to the many beauty of the city which can clearly only be describe with pictures. So here are more pictures for your viewing 😀

What was really exciting was walking towards verona town which is where Juliet’s Balcony is located. We’d walked through a crowded town with loads of tourist searching for the sign that says Romeo and Juliet. During that time, I’ve also observe the surrounding, there were many branded names along the street. And there is one thing I realise that there is always more than one Gelato shop along the way. You see one and you will see another right at the opposite corner. I guess that’s only because Italian Gelato are too good to refuse. There are always a queue waiting to get a cup of gelato and it is truely worthwhile waiting. So why would we refuse one?

Besides the many shops along the way, I happen to see also beggars in some corners. One of which that strikes me was a pregnant lady running from people to people with a picture of her other 2 children at home with her hands stretching out. Such scene always gives me a sad feel.

Next we arrived at the Juliet’s Garden. Packed with tourist and maybe really not what I’d expect but it does look exactly the same as the one in the movie – Letters to Juliet. I enjoyed every bit of my time there.

I’d really enjoyed my 30mins stay there. You cann only feel the same if you visit it yourself. The next event that we’d plan was The Arena of Verona for our 1st Opera together and yes it’s one best experience ever.

La travita was the Opera we were going to watch. I’d prefer Romeo and Juliet but that will only be play in August. So we had to miss that one. 

I’ve never attended an opera and had thought it must be really grand and I had to wear something formal. To my surprise, the arena is like a big stadium, open spaced and free seating. We bought dinner from a shop nearby and was going to do picnic in the stadium. That was like so exciting.

The grand Arena!

 

Me at the Arena.

 

Look at the Crowd!

Although I did not understand the saprono singing but I’ve bought a book that translate the play in English for my understanding. The setting was grand and totally enchanting despite us not understand abit of the language, yet also the music was really pleasing. Jos was going to get me a CD of the full music play. So I’m still waiting.
 
The opera was really long, money well spent! 😀 We left the show earlier as we were afraid we might have problem finding our car since we need to walk back to the garage in the dark. But then again, it was already 12 mid night. So it isn’t really early.
 
I can only say, the experience was one romantic and lovely one. Thanks to my very sweet boyfriend! xx
 

Stranded in a beautiful place – Dimaro, Italy

Yesterday, Jos and I had a conversation that went like this:

Jos: Do you remember the place high in alp mountains where we stayed in an apartment?

Me: oh Yes! Dolomiti?

Jos: Yes and first snow is already there!

Me: Must be nice! I remembered we were so close to the clouds.

Jos: Yes high in the mountains with the crazy restaurant.

Me: Oh yes, and the village name is called Dimaro!

Jos: You remembered everything!

Me: Of course… this is our memory.

Jos: That’s true. But I remember the place and restaurant. You remembered; name, price and most likely what we had for dinner!

And yes I did, we had mix grill that taste really nice.

Then we started talking how we was almost stranded, how we struggled to have our dinner at the apartment’s restaurant when it was crazily packed. While having that conversation with Jos, I recalled the unforgettable eventful day and thought I’d blog about it here too.

Dimaro was not in our plan. We had wanted to travel to Verona, Venice, Toscane, Roma and then straight to France.  But after Roma, we realise we had some time, so we thought we should maybe drive back to Arco, the first stop in Italy where we really love. But that was a very bad decision we both made but we live with our decision.

We drove 5 hours back to realise the campsite is fully booked. The other campsite around the same area are all full. We panic after a few calls because we realise they are not going to be a campsite for us.

We had to think of something else, We were seriously almost stranded. Suddenly, the sky felt dark even though its only 6pm (and no it wasn’t dark) but in my memory, it seems dark. For a minute, I’d thought we might really need to sleep in the car. Jos started flipping on his camping guide for any campsite that may be available. And finally we called upon Dolomiti Camping Village who claims they can afford a camping site for 1 tent 2 adults for only 1 night. So, Jos said yes we will take it and will arrive in 2 hours!

Shut the door, put on our seat belts and off we go. 2 hours ? No…. it took us another 3 over hours to get to Dimaro. The more we drive, the more scary it become. Because that when the sky started to turn really dark. There was also rain showers on the way and I just felt like we were never gonna make it to Dolomiti.

But of course, we did. When we arrived. The sky had turn dark and there was still rain showers. And we were tired, hungry and of course, I was very very moody. We have travelled 10 hours in the car! So do we still put up a tent with that rain shower and considering the amount of tiredness we both are. No, of course note. We will not sleep in a tent tonight. We both agree to rent an apartment for the night instead @ EUR94.00.

Attached Shower and Toilet

The little apartment comes with two single beds join together. Pretty comfortable for a totally worn out couple! Doesn’t really matter it isn’t a queen size, does it? All we needed was a bed!

Bed Room

Kitchen with Stove

That faithful night, after we check in, Jos had to carry my super big luggage that seems to weigh 30 kilos up 2 storey high just to get to the apartment. I’d told him that I do not need the whole luggage because we are only staying for a night. But he insist. I love my man, he is such a sweetheart!

We put down our luggage (mainly mine luggage as his is only a sport bag). We cannot think of anything else but FOOD! We were famished. So off we ran to the restaurant just next to the campsite. The restaurant was crazily packed with tourist from everywhere… except Singapore of course. I’m probably the only asian there.

Restaurant right next to Dolomiti Camping Village

We stood at the entrance waiting to be served and no one bothers. We stop a waitress to ask to be sitted, all she said was, sorry we are full, you have to wait. And so we did. We waited for a good 20 minutes and nothing happen. I was seriously famished. I just needed food! And for all I care, I decided to walk to a table where a group just left and sat there. Jos asked, are we allowed to do that? I replied, well, if they don’t serve us, we will have to self served. So we sat there for a good 5 minutes and a waitress came and cleared the table. While she clear the table, she said, this table is reserved. I wouldn’t move and requested that she find me another table then. At the end of it, they have no choice but serve us first so they can get rid of us fast enough. To be honest, there was many empty tables not cleaned and there was really a queue. I am still wondering why did they make us wait.
Anyway, quickly and happily, we browsed through the menu and within 5 minutes we know what we want. Both of us ordered mix-grilled and I am telling you…. its like heaven! Maybe because I was really hungry. I have to give credit to their food though. I think it is really tasty, despite the service.
Next Morning, we also had breakfast at the same restaurant and their buffet breakfast is once again very good. I would rate it 4/5.

Pizzaria Dolomati - Breakfast Dining

After breakfast, we checked out, move our luggage back to the car and head on to France to meet with The Van Dongens. Once we are out of the campsite, I awe at the beauty of being on a high moutain almost reaching the clouds. Its one of the most beautiful feeling I had the whole time this trip. The night before was all gloomy as it was raining and dark, we can’t see much. But daylight brought alot of beauty to the scenery on a high moutains. Check them out now!
Dimaro, Italy – Clouds Everywhere
We were out for our summer holiday for a good 3 weeks but this might be the most eventful day of the 3 weeks. Totally unforgettable and enjoyable despite the little panic moments.