EuropeItalyGenoa

6.1.09 Pisa to Genova, Italy

Genoa Travel Blog

 › entry 74 of 114 › view all entries
Look what we bought for Ned! A red Ferrari!

6.1.09    Pisa to Genova, Italy

 

We cannot believe that a year ago today we kissed Ned goodbye and headed west for Big Bend on our journey west and then north to Inuvik and Alaska.  Then back through Houston, and south through Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and El Salvador.  Then we prepped in Houston again before Disney to DC.  Finally 5 weeks of work before our flights to Dublin to meet the wonderful Behans and get Sugar:  Ireland, Wales, England, France, Spain, Italy, Greece, back to Italy and next…? 

 

It has been an incredible year - I appreciate every minute and don’t regret a single second.

Pisa
  We’ll likely be ready to head home at the end though. 

 

We have a great appreciation for many simple things:  Ned, our dogs, home, washing machines, potable tap water, friends, family, gardens, languages, school teachers, internet, honest police, journalists, history, freedom, hope and peace.  We are so grateful for this opportunity!

 

 

Pisa is just 40 miles from Florence, so after we left Camping Michelangelo this morning, we tootled over.  Traffic into Pisa was very slow, so we detoured and after some effort, found street parking-hooray!  We laughed when Lia pointed out the Leaning Tower of Pisa from our parking spot- we’d been looking for it the entire drive! 

 

There is a great ancient wall surrounding the magnificent church, tower and a few other buildings in a central square.

  They were really magnificent!  There were many tourists there, but it wasn’t crazy.

 

We took all the dumb tourist pictures appearing to hold up and push over the Leaning Tower- heehee!  Then we walked around the base of the tower, admiring how far one side has sunk into the ground- it was a terrific visit! 

 

As we walked back to Sugar, a tour leader was holding up a red, unopened umbrella.  Charles thought this was great because he too was carrying a red umbrella!  So he marched along holding his umbrella high, hoping someone would follow him as he turned the corner, but no luck.  My kids were thoroughly amused with these antics though.

 

Off to Genova along the Italian Riviera!  The excellent tollway cuts a level mountain path via long tunnels.  The tunnels are adventures themselves because I vote Italian drivers as the most crazy on the roads that I’ve driven this year:  too fast, too close, no lane respect, cutting in dangerously close after passing, ego antics, and apparent lack of patience or self-control.

Viewing the Leaning Tower from our parking spot in Pisa
  Do not send your kid for Driver’s Ed training in Italy!

 

Now add in long, dark tunnels and high mountain bridges to the mix and you’ve got a stressful situation.  Just before Genova, a disabled vehicle blocked one lane of a tunnel and slowed traffic for miles.  Italy is the only country we’ve hit such slowdowns- and many of them too.  Fortunately, the roads are in good condition and we haven’t actually witnessed or been victims of any accidents. 

 

We found our campground road after having to turn around along the waterfront- there was a campground sign from the other direction which then helped.  Then a 3.0 meter height restriction on a bridge (we’re 2.98m) appeared far higher and we went under fine. 

 

How can a campground be located at the end of such a road as we traversed?  Beats me!  It was 2-directional with only one open lane, blind curves, and a steep hill.

Charles the tour guide
  Our campground signs quit at one point, so Jazy jumped out to pre-walk the tight hillside roads.  There was no indication of a campground anywhere.  A kind man walking told us in Italian that it was just 50 meters up, on the right- we were grateful for that help! 

 

The campground is basically a row of parked motorhomes, but we do have electricity and decent bath facilities.  I think our campground price would have been 40E a night, but the nice reception lady appeared to change Jazy to a child’s price and deduct 10 percent, so we might get out of only 32E.  32E!  Isn’t that a wee bit high for a suburban, small campground- well, but what are we going to do?

 

We made use of the relative bargain price of just 3.50E each for a washer and dryer.  A dryer - hooray!  The last few places had just washers at 5E and 6E per load.  I will never complain about washer prices in the U.S. again. 

 

We prepared dinner, washed clothes, etc tonight and were happy to get business done.

Charles holds up the Leaning Tower of Pisa
 

 

We have really enjoyed Italy- the countryside and architecture are gorgeous, the people seem nice (and very real), and the food is terrific- all of it:  pizza, gelato, the breads, cappacino, wine, biscotti, desserts- ahhhh.  Also, the language is just lovely and melodic.  We could spend a long time enjoying the spoils of this delicious country!

 

In planning our route tomorrow, we’d really like to return to France, the land of friendly motorhoming, good food, nice people, etc (although we do love Italy too), but Switzerland is calling.  So much to see, so little time!

 

 

 

 

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Look what we bought for Ned!  A re…
Look what we bought for Ned! A r…
Pisa
Pisa
Viewing the Leaning Tower from our…
Viewing the Leaning Tower from ou…
Charles the tour guide
Charles the tour guide
Charles holds up the Leaning Tower…
Charles holds up the Leaning Towe…
Giant Lia holds up the Leaning Tow…
Giant Lia holds up the Leaning To…
Carrara marble
Carrara marble
Lovely Italy
Lovely Italy
Lovely Italy
Lovely Italy
Pisa through the great gate
Pisa through the great gate
Lia holds up the Leaning Tower of …
Lia holds up the Leaning Tower of…
Carrara marble
Carrara marble
Jazy holds up the Leaning Tower of…
Jazy holds up the Leaning Tower o…
Tower is sinking
Tower is sinking
Lots of motorhomes on the road!
Lots of motorhomes on the road!
Many mountain tunnels
Many mountain tunnels
Genoa
photo by: Grpablo