I just could not resist these photos — was waiting for the restaurant to open for lunch — 12:30pm — sitting in the Tower of Pisa area observing — I mean, how many ways to take a picture of holding up the Tower .…and if Mom could see you now… I tell you … the Asians have it for picture-taking — there is no question about it — it is amazing what comes out of their backpacks in the photo department — the expandable tripod, followed by 50 million different lenses, followed by little cloths to clean everything.. and this happens after taking a huge camera off their shoulder. Then, the positioning of everyone j-j-j-u-u-u-s-s-s-t-t-t SO….ok, don’t move..oops, wait a minute..ok, here we go..wait, I have to run in front too and be with you all.. and everyone smile.. Then.. we all look at it..and God forbid, it isn’t right………
And the outfits we wear — OMG —
I am getting pretty good though at picking nationalities — GERMANS: sturdy shoes ALWAYS, rain jackets; ENGLISH: sturdy shoes ALWAYS, sweater or jacket under the rain jacket, funky little hats, sorta pasty skin and usually eye glasses; AMERICANS: back packs with the ever-present water bottle in the little string thing on the side, Merrill or all terrain shoes , Rick Steve’s’ See Europe or another guide-book in hand; ITALIANS: the most AMAZINGLY large sunglasses one can possibly imagine and boots ALWAYS // ASIANS: Always and I do mean ALWAYS, CAMERAS, and women carry backpacks w/fuzzy little pink bears hanging from the zippers…..
Took the train to Florence: glad there weren’t TOO many tourists there, thank you very much, and oh yes, I don’t mind being #1,456 person in line for this museum…..and also to Lucca: trendy little town with a wall completely around it which was great for walking, beautiful churches; Siena — gorgeous cathedral — I mean, they are all beautiful and finally found the ideal guide-book, at least for me. Key words: SHORT HISTORY
My last breakfast at Michele’s Guesthouse was truly what “traveling” is all about. At the table there was: a German man and his French wife/companion, a Chinese man and his girlfriend, Michele and Gabriella(B&B hosts), and me. Main language spoken was English interspersed with French and Italian. The German had something to do with factories, I gathered, and the Chinese man was 28 years old, completing his Ph.D and doing research in Germany on, are you ready for this one?? the effect of learning different linguistics on the brain – I just stared at him and of course, diarrhea of the mouth immediately happened and out of my mouth came the words “Now, that will be handy..and you will use that for????? what kind of job?” — “I’ll go into research.” OK..thank God, nobody got my tone of total amazement …. anyway, we spoke about all our individual countries and the different world perspectives… it was just great conversation and what a gift the Europeans have – converse in so many languages..
Took the train to Sta. Margherita, on the Italian Riviera, next to Portofino and it is gorgeous. The difference between Nice and here is like — well — Rodeo Drive, California and old Pasadena, California ,or maybe, Red Cadillacs and Black Mazeratis — very few people here..