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Archive for October, 2007

Scarlino: Just the two us

October 29th, 2007

Whilst we do love Yoko, our campervan, we acknowledge that she is a little on the small side when it comes to living accommodation. After 7 weeks of continuously living in her, moving everything around to get anything and constantly tripping over each other, we decided it was time to treat ourselves to somewhere with […]

Bagni de Petriolo: Warm, eggy water

October 26th, 2007

To break up our journey from Siena to Scarlino, we took a small detour to the natural thermally heated waters of Bagni de Petriolo. Unlike most experiences in Italy, the [natural] spa here is a non-chargeable item. From afar, the smell of sulphur is a little offputting, but once immersed you hardly notice it…

Siena: Help, what are we doing wrong?

October 25th, 2007

Siena is a lovely city which we only spent one day looking around, mainly because of the closure of the camping facilities there. However, had we been able to stay longer, I’m not sure what we would have seen. Bear with me here whilst I explain. On our arrival, and after consulting the Rough Guide, […]

Disrespect

October 24th, 2007

This picture is of a statue, taken inside the Duomo of Florence. Click on it and look closely at it. I often appreciate graffiti in its various forms, in fact I came really close to buying Banksy’s coffee-table book just before we left for our trip. However, I cannot understand what drives people to believe […]

So many names for the same place

October 23rd, 2007

I understand why there are so many languages in the world (Esperanto, anyone?) but I don’t understand why the same place has a different name in so many languages. I had no idea that what we know as Florence, is natively called Firenze, for example. And for that matter, why do we call Germany, Germany? […]

Florence: Tears in the dome

October 23rd, 2007

There’s a lot to do in Florence, if you into art, sculpture, churches, food or even just mooching*. We’re into the latter two. We spent a couple of days walking the streets sucking-in the sights, sounds, smells, tastes and feelings of the city instead of bouncing from queue to queue for the main attractions. (No […]

Pisa: The leaning tower, thereof

October 22nd, 2007

Let’s be clear about this upfront: Pisa is not a small town. We only saw a corner of it, you know the one with the leaning tower and the tat stalls which pedal all things leaning. I’m certain that there is way more to Pisa, however along with the million other foreign tourists in the […]

Hawkers: Bad or sad?

October 20th, 2007

Hawkers; the looky-looky men illegally pedalling fake designer handbags and sunglasses in a very affrontish manner to tourists as they attempt to pass-by unscathed. “Look, look. I give you good price.” Frustrating? Annoying? Aggravating? Or human beings struggling to make a living to support their family, just like everybody else?

And he said “let there be light!”

October 19th, 2007

Today, is a happy day. For a month now, we’ve been pootling around in Yoko, our [somewhat] trusty VW camper van. It’s got a solid roof and, throughout the rain, we’ve remained dry. It’s got a gas cooker and so we’ve not gone hungry. It’s not got much insulation and no heater too and so […]

Modena & Maranello: The Italian Stalian

October 18th, 2007

If I said the word “Maranello”, my betting is that it means exactly one of two things to you: a) Nothing -or- b) Ferrari Maranello, the home of Ferrari, is a village just outside of the main city of Modena, around which a number villages playing home to Italian marques orbit: Lamborghini, Pagani, Ducati, they’re […]