Northern Italy Road Trip Part IIIAuthor: Jim and Donna C. (More Trip Reviews by Jim and Donna C.)
Date of Trip: October 2010
Return to Northern Italy Road Trip Part II
Tuesday, October 19, 2010 -- Another Donna Day! Clear and Cool
We were packed and ready to go by 0700. We went upstairs for breakfast in the hotel. six Euros each. Jim embarrassed the waitress who is also the night clerk. At breakfast she asked Jim for our room number. Jim said NO as he was married. She blushed and said no no, but we all had a good laugh.
Checking out we were asked to enter our comments on Trip Advisor. We said we would. The front desk person, who we think was the wife of the owner, gave us a bottle of house wine as a parting gift. Paid the bill, now for the luggage.
Jim dragged two bags up two flights of stairs to the main lobby. The hotel owner offered to help with the rest of the luggage. From the front lobby down the hall over a few more steps to the very small elevator. One at a time with luggage. Reminds us of the elevator in Paris last Christmas.
We got to the sidewalk and walked towards the news stand where our car will be brought to us. The driver showed up in about 10 minutes. We loaded up the gear, loaded up Lola pointing towards San Gimignano and off we went.
Traffic heading out of town was not nearly as bad as we had coming in. We hit the highway singing our song of the road onto the next town. Now our song of the road is shifting gears, going in and out of traffic as Donna dries laundry on the back of the front seat. Ah vagabonds up for another adventure.
We get to San Gimignano around 1030 parking just outside in a wide open lot. We walked to the front gate and entered into a medieval city. Touristy yes, but it was fun. We are suckers for these shops. We got Donna a nice silver ring, a nice runner for the buffet, a set of salad fork and spoons … you get the idea.
We stopped at the "best" gelato store in the commune. It was delicious. We had lunch on our way out of town, sitting on the sidewalk watching the people go by. We had a ball! We took lots of pictures walked the town, and headed out with full arms towards Sienna. We both decided we couldn't pronounce San Gimignano, so we ended up calling it San Chimichanga -- we had a good laugh.
On our way to Sienna, we spotted another "fortress" town, Monteriggioni. We left the main road and found the town. It was much smaller than San Gimignano but very picturesque. We were able to look over the hills to San Gimignano and gaze upon the hills of Tuscany. We left for Sienna.
Arriving in Sienna we looked for the Duomo or center of town and a place to park. Around and around we went not finding where we needed to go. Around 1700 we gave up and headed out of town towards Assisi. We decided to get someplace local to stay the night and reassess our goals.
Upon leaving town we tried to get a hotel, B&B, Agritourismo, something. Around and around we went, eventually ending up back in Sienna. Heck, we give up, heading out of town again towards Assisi.
About eight miles out of town, traveling on the Autostrada, we spotted a hotel from the road. We took the exit and headed to the hotel. It was rated a four star which is normally above our price range but we decided to try it out. Luckily it was only 88 Euros for the night including breakfast so we took the place.
Going up to the room we had to get the desk clerk to help us figure out the elevator. When we opened the door to our room it wasn't made up. Jim went down to the front desk but there was no one there. Eventually Jim wandered out back and the desk clerk was working on a gazebo.
We got a new room, but we questioned the four star rating, even the decor was from the 1980's. We unpacked a bit, and went down stairs for dinner, finding the restaurant wasn't open until 1900. We needed to wait a half hour so we enjoyed a free beverage in the lobby.
We had a decent meal at the restaurant. It was the quietest meal we have had on the trip. No music, no real conversation just silence. Ugh. Finishing our meal we returned to our room. Jim worked on the log for a while, and through the internet found a Agritourismo for us near Assisi. We called and made reservations and it was off to bed.
Wednesday October 20, 2010 -- Cool and Sunny another Donna Day!
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