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TUSCANY: What is it? Which parts should YOU visit? How to avoid the hype

TUSCANY: What is it? Which parts should YOU visit? How to avoid the hype

Aug 3rd, 2010, 10:38 AM
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A mental note to myself: if I'll be planning Italy next year, click on Zeppole's name to read advices.
Dayenu is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2010, 01:04 PM
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Well, I think a public forum is for posting what you enjoy and leaving it up to the other person to take the advice or not.

It could also be for pointing out what other travelers enjoy even though you may not and then letting the asker take it from there.

Some new travelers need to see all the options and then tailor them to their own tastes. Is that what you are getting at, OP?

When I first started planning trips, before I discovered Fodors, I would go to a travel agency and get tour brochures on what is interesting in a certain area. Then I would decide what I wanted to see, take notes and visit whatever it was. Usually they were guided bus tour brochures and I would pick and choose. Isn't that what this forum offers also?
SeaUrchin is offline  
Aug 4th, 2010, 08:28 AM
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Well zeppole, I've been asking myself many of the same questions you posed above, so it was great to see them and your take on them as well. The only one I'm not sure of is if Tuscany is right for the kids, but we'll be plowing on anyway, trusting that eventually I'll find the right agriturismo and itinerary to keep them semi-interested. This part of the trip will be about relaxation...and maybe a few more days of sunshine, smells and food, thanks to your post!
kwren is online now  
Aug 4th, 2010, 02:34 PM
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I'm late at the party, and it would seem that half of it has already been deleted (certainly for good reason). Three and a half short (those who know me are invited to start laughing) remarks:
- I concur with most everything zeppole (and ek) wrote, but it's not specifically about Tuscany. Spending pretty much time in Venice e.g., I'd love to share the city online with those travelers who passed zeppole's exam.
- One point I don't concur with is the first one, however well worded. I for one always prefer art in situ, in the place it has been created for. Museums are not even my second choice; my fourteenth, perhaps. So whether the art has been transferred to a museum in Florence or in København, the fact that it has been transferred at all makes it lose much of its appeal for me. I don't think that disqualifies me for appreciating Tuscan art and architecture, or Tuscany in general apart from sunshine and food (which I appreciate, too, admittedly).
- The second point I don't 100 percent concur with is guidebooks vs. forums. Just recently, on zeppole's "1-2-3" threads, we had an interesting discussion on the depressing uniformity of guidebook (or guidesite, for that matter) recommendations: most all of them send people to see precisely the same places, precisely the same sights, and there are more than just a few sights on which more information is to be found on Fodor's than in guidebooks. (At least, more recent information. Try to find something on S. Zuane Degolà in Venice... I'm almost sure you'll have to go back to Lorenzetti and Ruskin, which means that the most up-to-date guidebook would be of 1926. On Fodor's, not so; at least, if anyone's interested, s/he could get an answer here.) And without going into details, I dare saying that there are some Fodorites who speak better Italian than many guidebook authors. So I think for guidebook authors and forum posters, pretty much the same is true: most of them are dumb, some of them are brillant, and you just have to figure out whom to trust.
- (ek, will you forgive me? Uffizi, not Ufizzi. Just think "offices", it's the same word, only the Italian z became c in English.)
franco is offline  
Aug 4th, 2010, 05:17 PM
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Ummm - could anybody be kind enough, please, to update me what happened (here, most probably, where several posts seem to refer to "negative" posts that are simply no longer here)? zeppole's profile, "this page is no longer on Fodor's"? StCirq's profile, "this page is no longer on Fodor's"? Dear ek or anybody else, please enlighten me!
franco is offline  
Aug 4th, 2010, 05:31 PM
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zeppole did denigrate StCirq and a few others, like Bob the Navigator, someone else. But not sure how it came to this.
iris1745 is online now  
Aug 4th, 2010, 05:33 PM
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franco, when posters cross the line in attitude or language, they are banned from Fodors. The offending posts are usually removed.
Jean is online now  
Aug 4th, 2010, 05:38 PM
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It would appear they have been given a little "time out."
Fra_Diavolo is offline  
Aug 4th, 2010, 06:16 PM
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Thank you! Jean, I'm aware of these procedures - I was just curious what happened to unleash them. Fra_Diavolo - if it's just a time out, I'm fine with it. But basically, we need them, zeppole AND StCirq. BOTH of them, although perhaps none of them will be glad to read that.
franco is offline  
Aug 4th, 2010, 06:56 PM
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Since I am a retired newspaper editor I am reading zeppole's post with an editor's eye and sensibility. The first thing that jumps out is in the second paragraph: "This is a thread to help YOU, the traveler, figure out what would be the most rewarding experience for YOU in Tuscany." This line leads me to believe that I will learn great things--among them where I should go in Tuscany. Nope. Not in all of the more than 1,680 words of this rant does it actually help me find anything close to a rewarding experience. Not only that, this would never have made it into one of my publications for several reasons. One, the tone is all-knowing and patronizing (as usual). Two, the use of ALL CAPS to prove a point is childish and does not prove the point. Three, this is a forum sponsored by a travel guide company. People who visit this site are presumably looking for some "guidance." This rant provided none. My sincere hope is that anyone who is sincerely looking for a little help in planning a pleasant vacation looked elsewhere lest they be hopelessly confused and decide to go to Spain instead.
DonnaD44 is offline  
Aug 4th, 2010, 07:58 PM
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franco - As pointed out, Zeppole has been banned. This was at least Zeppole's fifth screen name (fessed up to five of them on another thread although I think there have been more) that has been banned for slamming other posters and putting down their ideas/suggestions. Zeppole has also been banned on other boards and always reappears with a new screen name to stir up more trouble.

I'm sorry to see St Cirq was caught up in Zeppole's antics as St. Cirq has been a long time poster on Fodor's and I don't recall any questionable behavior by her. I hope St. Cirq's is a temporary timeout.
kybourbon is online now  
Aug 4th, 2010, 09:52 PM
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>>I hope St. Cirq's is a temporary timeout.<<

It is - she will be back soon !!!

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is online now  
Aug 5th, 2010, 02:12 AM
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Yes, stcirq has been temporarily banned for something she said that was really a nothing compared the this other one who has such a bad reputation.
gracejoan3 is offline  
Aug 5th, 2010, 04:28 AM
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re the OP:

E che ne so io.

I think part of the fun of researching a trip might be the exchange of ideas and suggestions between several different people. I do agree with Donna that the OP came off as patronizing, but that tone might attract some people. Didn't do much for me. After all, I love traveling in Italy, can speak the language, and am not a child. I also passionately believe that much of the magic and magnetism of Italy lies in the discovery made by each individual, at their own level, in their own time. One might hint at one direction or another if offering the voice of experience, but then allow the new traveler enough breathing space to run for themselves. And I have trust that Italy will provide the rest, without fail. Which is what I love about Italy.

As for all these "bannings", hopefully those involved will use the time off to enjoy life without focusing so much on pointless bickering on a computer, for pete's sake. Of course, I didn't read the comments involved-so maybe the 2 posters said profound things about which I am still blissfully unaware.
bellastarr is offline  
Aug 5th, 2010, 04:47 AM
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> This was at least Zeppole's fifth screen name

kybourbon, what were her/his other names, remember any?
kappa1 is offline  
Aug 5th, 2010, 05:51 AM
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I've forgotten some of them, but she actually admitted to having five in a thread not long ago. Here is a link to a thread where she is slamming Stu and he mentions one of the previous names (it's banned).

This link has posts under the previous name where she is talking about a hotel she stayed in Chiusi (La Sfinge). If you've been on the Italy board awhile, you will recognize the hotel name as a previous name (banned also). In this thread she is slamming Bob and I had become tired of it and responded. She had been attacking Bob and Stu every time they would post. It's easy to spot the writing style because the attacks are all similar.

Bob and Stu will remember other earlier names.
kybourbon is online now  
Aug 5th, 2010, 06:00 AM
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I was so sorry to see that StCirq has been temporarily banned. She has been nothing but helpful to me. I have written to Fodor's asking that they please reinstate her soon.

Zeppole regularly is rude and patronizing to other posters as if he/she is the only one who knows anything about Italy. I won't miss him/her but will surely recognize him/her under a new screen name!
mamcalice is offline  
Aug 5th, 2010, 06:33 AM
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Hasn't entirely too much bandwidth been wasted *by* Zeppole (much of it in lengthy quotes from copyright material, which is explicitly forbidden by Fodor's guidelines and only sometimes proved the point that she was trying to make) and *about* Zeppole (to which I have admittedly contributed, in a futile discussion with her most fervent admirer and defender)?

Another user name was primeranoche. Which leaves two more to be identified.
Zerlina is offline  
Aug 5th, 2010, 08:56 AM
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Interesting. Thanks for those answers.
kappa1 is offline  
Aug 5th, 2010, 09:54 AM
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The Italy posts are going to be a lot less interesting.
yorkshire is offline  

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