Monday, July 8, 2013

Thinking about the next adventure

The adventure of becoming an empty nester.  I guess that's my next adventure.  Maybe I need to change the title of the blog, or start a new blog on my own?

I'm working on adding the photos to all of our blog posts that we didn't finish last year.  And, scrolling through Josie's photos from last year's trip.  I love how our photos illustrate our different perspectives.  As I flip through her photos I'm regularly surprised (very pleasantly) by her choice of what to photograph, and the angle she snaps the shot from.

Like this one...

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Wine and art tour of Provence

My amazing art instructor in Aix en Provence is offering this very cool art and wine tour....

Saturday, July 21, 2012


We are in an old windmill on the crater edge of Santorini using the internet....with a pretty spectacular view and a nice cool (almost cold!) breeze blowing in through the window and making the curtains dance.

Just read about the horrible shooting in Aurora, Colorado at a movie theater. Crazy.  Horrible and crazy.  and Scary.

After catching up on all of our bookings for the rest of the trip and our email we wandered into Fira for some lunch!

 Could we possibly eat all of this....

after lunch we found Josie's favorite store...accidentally...

and a little grocery shopping for dinner....

and back to our gorgeous terrace for dinner and another spectacular sunset...this is the view looking to the south to Fira and the port...

Josie bought a new dress today...

This picture helps give some perspective on where our terrace was....right on the rim of the crater.  We are probably in many tourists' photos...taken from both below (the crater-rim path was just below our terrace) and above...

This blue roof church was right next to our apartment and terrace...

We found many postcard with this view!  but they somehow got rid of the power lines...Greek rosé wine was delicious.  very different from provençal rosé, but still yummy...

Monday, July 16, 2012

16 july - Athens! and Pure Bliss.

ferry, taxi, bus, bus, metro, hotel room!  Athens is HOT.  Like a blast furnace.

We arrived in Patras thinking we'd take the train to Athens, but there were some issues there, so bus it was.  But the next challenge was how to get to the bus station from the ferry port.  The taxis were trying to take advantage of the tourists, but eventually we found a reasonable taxi driver and some people to share the fare with.

Breakfast in the bus's the menu...

Once we made it to Athens on the bus, then we had to figure out how to get to our hotel. A very kind english-speaking couple helped us find the right city bus and then we caught the metro and voila...we found our wondrous hotel.  Hotel Attalos on Athinas Str. just near Monstrataki square....with a rooftop view of the Acropolis!

After a rest, we wandered a bit and found an amazing vegetarian restaurant. Amazing food...

Herbaria ecologia...all greek and all vegetarian.  stuffed zuchini, spinach w/ rice and what we thought was lemonade but turned out to be ginger juice!  ooh lala! No one spoke english, so we just pointed and ended up with a spectacularly delicious meal that was cheap and amazing.  We ordered two glasses of what we thought was lemonade (see below), but was GINGER JUICE!  Wow!  Zesty and refreshing.  Watered down a bit, really it was perfect on a hot dry day.

 We wandered around some more.  We found this great bookstore.  Josie needed a new book.  They had an English section, but we had to check out the Greek section, just to see what a Greek calculus book was like...

It's GREEK to me!  hahahaha!

More wandering around.  Did I mention it's hot?  How about some cold coconut?

And, of course, we had to find Tally Weijl!

Pure Bliss...most amazing restaurant...decor and food.  fabulous menu.  

Tartine (greek bread?) with feta cheese mousse (pink w/ beet juice) topped with beets, mint and walnuts.  

Detox salad with grapefruit and red fruit vinaigrette.  Pesto pasta w/ fresh tomatoes.  Noodles with veggies, egg and tamari.  


 For "dessert" we had strawberries, sugar and mint in water sort of...over ice.  Delicious!

Evening on rooftop terrace overlooking acropolis.  aaahhh.

It was 100 F today.  roasting.  but nice and cool on the roof right now.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

15 july - Ferry #4

We enjoyed the morning at our agro-BnB in the middle of an olive orchard.  This old olive tree in front of the house was gorgeous.


Castellana Grotte to Bari porto in car with Italian woman who doesn't speak English but was very kind and a crazy, but careful driver.  what an adventure.  she drove us along the coast when possible.  

We made it on to ferry just in time.  

We ended up with room to ourselves.  It was a very nice ferry. (now that we are ferry connoisseurs).

And a long nap in cool room. Lunch and dinner on ferry.   Lots of salad and watermelon because the restaurant was pretty meat heavy, but the salads were great.

car, ferry today...

Saturday, July 14, 2012

day 14 - the evasive post office

didn't make context tour
we found one post office, buy they didn't have boxes.  so they sent us to another one...which we couldn't find...but eventually did.  bought a box.

back to hotel to pack

load everything up to get bus to Termini station.  The post office was closed.

bad directions to post office that didn't exist and horrible encounter with awful rude taxi cab driver.  finally, i literaly ran carrying a bright yellow box to the post office i had seen from the bus window and made it there just before they closed.

plans to deposit bags and bag depot and go shopping were scuppered by the late hour and the long lines at the bag depot.  so we opted to relax and have lunch.  amazing lunch at the train station.  i had saffron risotto and josie had pesto pasta.  

on to high speed train to Bari.

arrive in Bari and wait in line at wrong ticket window so long that we missed the early train.  in the end it was a good thing because it gave us time to have some food and get my glasses fixed!  who would've thought there would be a really nice optical shop just across from the Bari train station still open at 7 pm on a sat evening??

eventually we made it to Castellan Grotte and our B&B. Our sweet young hostess picked us up at the train station.  Her name was something like Marijke and she's at university studying languages and spending the summer working at the family b&b which is mostly run by her aunt.  The home has been in their family since the 1700s.   it is an amazing stone farmhouse.
walk, bus, train, train, car

Friday, July 13, 2012

13 July - Borghese and MAXXI...centuries of art!

late start
MAXXI - hedgehog hanging over the front door, laundry lines.  Textile art with videos...guy dragging bales of clothes through museum, down the street.  tent with gloves.

really cool architecture!

Long walk to Borghese through the gardens...but beautiful...umbrella pines.
Bernini!!  apollo and daphne.  wow.  emilee's mona lisa.

cafe at piazza navona

watermelon in trastavere