My Week Near Arezzo

Sep 13th, 2013, 06:53 AM
  #41  
 
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wish I'd known that, santamonica - next time!
annhig is offline  
Sep 13th, 2013, 07:37 AM
  #42  
 
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Rome is my favorite city. Glad you are enjoying. There is a low-key trattoria kitty corner from Santa Cecilia if your hotel is nearby, Roma Sparita. You would probably need to walk by and reserve. Reportedly good pizzas at dinner; we had lunch after visiting the church, cacio e pepe, etc., mmm.

Have fun!
Leely2 is offline  
Sep 13th, 2013, 12:37 PM
  #43  
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Today we popped up early to go to the context travel tour of the coloseum which I reserved last night and had some trouble finding out where to meet the group but finally found out it was at the coffee shop above the metro. Now, here's the thing. The tour is $70 each plus entry fee plus what not ends up $250 for two for 3.5 hours and really, for that amount of money, you want some life changing presentation, not just that over the years the street level in Rome has risen because of floods and whatnot, you know what I mean? I don't feel my life has changed that much so I might suggest a cheaper tour. I mean, you don't need to spend $250 to learn that gladiators had difficult lives.

Anyway, we had an informative tour of the coloseum (is that spelled right?) and Palentine Hill and a glass elevator ride to the top of something, and then rode our bikes back to our hotel for a nap. I don't know when naps be and such an important part of travel, but sometime it happened.

I tried to get a reservation to see the Borghese museum but they were sold out so we took a street car (tram) back to downtown and then walked and walked to the Spanish Steps where we sat for a while. While we were there a bride tossed her bouquet to bridesmaids. Girls in Rome spend some time working on their makeup and presentation with generally very favorable results. I'm old, but I gotta say, they look GOOD, objectively speaking.

Them we walked back to the streetcar and back to our quiet hotel in Trastevere (which is a little difficult to pronounce) and had a glass of wine and tapas, and then out to dinner at Augusto (Oso Buco for 8 euros) and a carafe of wine, for heavens sake, and, finally, a mixed berry gelato (the store was out of raspberry) which was very tasty. I'm very fond of those little plastic spoon thingies.

Tomorrow, the villa. Thanks for your suggestions and kind responses. It's fun traveling with you.

BTW, DW said Santa Cecelia is a saint because she tried to save Christians and because she took three days to die after they cut off her head. Hmm.
santamonica is offline  
Sep 13th, 2013, 12:55 PM
  #44  
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Three days! What was she thinking?
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Sep 13th, 2013, 01:03 PM
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The tour is $70 each plus entry fee plus what not ends up $250 for two for 3.5 hours and really, for that amount of money, you want some life changing presentation, not just that over the years the street level in Rome has risen because of floods and whatnot, you know what I mean? >>

that's what puts me off tours, s/m, especially as we have often travelled with our kids, so it would be more like $500.

Santa Cecilia is the patron saint of music - here's her full story according to those who ought to know:

http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=34

the name "Trastevere" means across the river Tevere [Tiber to you and me], and is pronounced with the stress on the Tevere, thus: trasTEVere, [don't forget to say the final E]
annhig is offline  
Sep 13th, 2013, 05:35 PM
  #46  
 
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>>>The tour is $70 each plus entry fee plus what not ends up $250 for two for 3.5 hours and really, for that amount of money, you want some life changing presentation,<<<>>>you don't need to spend $250 to learn that gladiators had difficult lives<<<


You could have hired a private guide for that.

>>>that's what puts me off tours, s/m, especially as we have often travelled with our kids, so it would be more like $500.<<<

The official tours run by the sites are usually pretty reasonable (5-9€ for the Colosseum depending on which tour plus the 12€ entrance ticket). Renting audio guides often cost as much, but you can usually share.

>>>and then out to dinner at Augusto (Oso Buco for 8 euros)<<<

A bargain at dinner to make up for the overpriced tour!

>>>finally, a mixed berry gelato (the store was out of raspberry) which was very tasty.<<<

Glad to see you are branching out. By the end of your trip you might even try gelato that isn't berry!
kybourbon is online now  
Sep 14th, 2013, 09:13 AM
  #47  
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We have left TrasTEVere and arrived at the house in Umbria which is near Arezzo but is closer to Monterchi which is the middle of no where, but a very pretty nowhere with Internet access.

All my old volleyball friends are here. I still like them, although they can get on my nerves. Its possible i could get on their nerves. We're going out to dinner in an hour.

This house is beautiful. Tile floors. Comfortable armchairs. Nice lamps. Old stone walls. Swimming pool. Tennis court. Mountains and fields, roses and rosemary. Open windows and doors. No bugs.

I have it so much better than St Cecelia. At times like this you have to question the fairness of life.

I hope we can get gelato tonight.
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Sep 14th, 2013, 10:15 AM
  #48  
 
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The house looks gorgeous. You are encouraging me to get back to Rome and soon. Gelato in Italy, any flavor, is heavenly. Thanks for lettin gus travel with you.
yestravel is offline  
Sep 14th, 2013, 10:54 AM
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Snoop around and see if there are any sagras happening in the nearby villages.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 01:57 AM
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Its possible i could get on their nerves.>>

surely not. please let us have the details of the meal and any gelato consumed.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 07:38 AM
  #51  
 
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Nice-looking villa, santa. Yes please, more food info.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 08:42 AM
  #52  
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Yesterday we arrived and sat around the pool with wine and cheese and salami and fruit and then we went to dinner. I'm sorry, I'm not that much of a foodie, but the restaurant was very good, pieva vecchio in Monterchi, which is pronounced Monturkey. I had ravioli stuffed with spinach, half with a tomato sauce, half with mushrooms. Others had beef with rosemary and juniper and gnocchi with truffles. I sang Nobody Knows The Trouffles I've Seen.

Tonight we are going to cook a pork roast. The butcher acted out for us how to cook the roast. Cook at high heat for 40 minutes, the meat goes sis sis sis. DW asks "sis sis sis?" and everybody laughs. Maybe you had to be there.

Today we drove to Anghilari which is probably not spelled that way. It's an old hill town which has a painting by Da Vinci, maybe, of the battle of Anghilari in which one guy died because his horse fell on him. It was a very nice town, but basically nothing happened there. Two thousand years and nothing happened. The museum was nice. Italians seem very nice.

No gelato yesterday and today looks dubious. I saw a sign for a sagra but didn't see where it was. I'll check the Internet now. We'll try and do something really interesting tomorrow. Melon and prosciutto are good.
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Sep 15th, 2013, 08:48 AM
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I really miss Italy.
wekewoody is offline  
Sep 15th, 2013, 09:06 AM
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Tonight we are going to cook a pork roast. The butcher acted out for us how to cook the roast. Cook at high heat for 40 minutes, the meat goes sis sis sis. DW asks "sis sis sis?" and everybody laughs. Maybe you had to be there.>>

lol - does none of you cook? the butcher may be italian but the meat will be the same. for roasting pork, 1/2 hour to the pound in weight at a medium heat is about right [that's a hour per kilo]; putting it into a hot oven for the first 30 mins or so will give you a nice crackling [especially if the skin has been scored, oiled and salted] but after that you'd need to turn it down to ensure that it cooks right through, unless you like your pork pink of course. [which isn't thought to be very safe]. What are you having with it?

good luck in the hunt for the gelato!
annhig is offline  
Sep 15th, 2013, 10:49 AM
  #55  
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Thanks ann. We got a little confused on time total and time per pound. But we got plenty of wine. Stay tuned for update.
santamonica is offline  
Sep 15th, 2013, 02:20 PM
  #56  
 
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>>>Melon and prosciutto are good.<<<

Keep an eye out for fresh green figs. Nothing better.
kybourbon is online now  
Sep 15th, 2013, 05:45 PM
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Thank you santamonica for your wonderful trip report! It's making me smile. Hubby and I are leaving for Italy in 2 weeks. One week in Venice, then we will be staying near Assisi for a week. So I'm very interested in hearing all of your adventures!
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Sep 16th, 2013, 10:14 AM
  #58  
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Well, the pork roast turned out very nicely. Now, a day later we're sitting around waiting for dinner from a new crew of cooks.

Four of us drove to Siena, others hung around the house and visited the Museum of Weights in Montetchi, and others visited Citta do Costello (where a friend claimed to visit the abbey and met the abbot of Costello).

I went to Siena which has a museum with a fresco illustrating good government and bad government. Bad government is led by the devil. Rick Steve's has this painting in his video so you can see how cool we were to be there. We didn't climb the tower because it cost extra and climbing towers loses some appeal after 60 years, although I still like the fire tower in Asawoman State Park in Bethany Beach, not to mention the WWII observation towers in Cape Henlopen State Park.

We also went to the Duomo which has black and white strips and is incredible. When we got home i jumped in the pool. pretty sweet. Now I gotta go eat dinner.
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Sep 16th, 2013, 10:15 AM
  #59  
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Tomorrow Assisi.
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Sep 17th, 2013, 01:32 AM
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Well, the pork roast turned out very nicely. Now, a day later we're sitting around waiting for dinner from a new crew of cooks. >>

pleased to hear it! what did you serve with it? when we spent a week in Venice one Easter, for our sunday lunch we bought some lamb to roast from a butcher, who threw in some rosemary to go with it. then when we went to buy potatoes, they inquired if they were for roasting or boiling - we had an entire cookery lesson by the time we'd bought everything we needed.

<>

sounds like a wonderful day. the cathedral in Siena is one of the most impressive buildings I think I've ever seen - the first time we went we were young enough to climb the tower without thinking about it, and the view over the roofs is still one of my most cherished photographs. but as we get older, other things are more important - like dinner!

buon apertito!
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