Tuesday, May 10, 2016


After departing our Hotel Neptune (above) in Dubrovnik,  we are now in the heart of Italy having traversed three of the four papal states. Specifically, we are an hour away from Siena after lunching there today. I have become obsessed with food. Last night we went to a restaurant in Perugia that no tourist would ever find and ate with the locals - risotto for primi, veal artichoke for second piatti, and custard and chocolate for dessert. Fantastico! Today all I could think of was more pasta, and gelato, and when we arrived in Siena all I cared about was lunch. I ordered a papardelle porcini washed down with chianti classico, accompanied by bread and olive oil, insalata miste (the tomatoes, people!) and then a cup of gelato with four different flavours - hazelnut, pistachio, vanilla and strawberry. Heaven on a stick!
I have thrown all caution to the wind and barely glance at the cathedrals and sightseeing highlights, instead preferring to drink in the vineyard scenery as we tour in our beautiful Mercedes bus, so new you can still smell the leather! The four of us are getting on exceedingly well - you'd have to be crazy to be churlish in these conditions - and our 12 other fellow voyagers on Back Roads are easy on the nerves. Of course, the Italian guide, Augustino, is charm personified, jolly, good fun, and married to an Aussie so he knows we like "yummy" places! Buon appetito, everyone, think of me having MORE fresh pasta tonight under the stars! Below a photograph of the view from  our villa suite...

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