#2 Italy, May 22, 2001

#2 Italy, May 22, 2001

10-1Partina is a beautiful village set in a small valley.





Its 16th Century 12church is central to the town, as is the ‘Bar Sport’ where villagers congregate at all times of the day for a coffee. I was thrilled to see Roberto’s and Claire’s Christmas card 14displayed on the back of the bar. It was a picture (that I took) of Marco and Lorenzo playing in the Minnesota snow!

On Sunday we drove to Florence, a big 38-2undertaking, both for the 1 1/2 hour drive, but also to find parking.


We visited all the usual sites, like “The David,” the Medici Chapel, the Baptistry, the Ponteveccio, and Santa Croce with Galileo’s Tomb. Unfortunately the Duomo was closed.39







After lunch at the Piazza della Signorina, we noticed a large crowd gathered in front of the Duomo. The parade and church bell-chiming that followed were for the installation of a new Archbishop—-no doubt the reason that the Duomo was 32-1closed, earlier.

Leaving Florence, we were caught in a traffic jam, probably from a soccer game since many people were flying team flags out the windows of their cars.

The next day we returned to Poppi Castle and were treated to a tour of all three floors of the castle. This is 48new, as earlier I had not been able to see the inside. How nice! The classmates bought me six mugs for a hostess gift! We again ate dinner at Il Casentino at Poppi Castle.








We visited Arezzo, briefly, having lunch at ‘La Taverna’ with 40-1vino frizzanti—-
white fizzy wine. Ruth admired (a copy of) an Etruscan Chimera from 600 BC.

41-2 (1)


A trip out of Tuscany to visit Ravenna was on the docket. Since it is quite far from Partina  we had to leave quite early so I woke the gang up by playing Pavarotti singing some of the famous arias, turned up pretty loud! The driving was quite challenging so we stopped for a cappuccino in Mercato Saracen. Given the tradition of only paying when you are leaving rather than when you are served coffee, I forgot to pay. Nobody said anything! A few minutes later I decided to return to the coffee shop and use the restroom before we went on. The waiter then reminded me that I had not paid! Oofda!

22-1Ravenna was wonderful! These mosaics are from the 6th century when Ravenna was the Seat of the Catholic Church. They are just as bright and beautiful as ever! It was a fatiguing day, but well worth while!

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