2013 in Bordeaux

2013 in Bordeaux

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Getting Ready to Roll!

Click on the map to make it bigger

Welcome to the blog!  We are home from 2 glorious weeks in Florida soaking up the winter sunshine and now it is time to get going with our big trip.  Most of the big details are planned, so now it is time to start packing, taking stuff out, repacking, and taking more out.  After the trip to Florida I am determined to pack lighter than ever.

For those of you that are new to this blog, my husband Jerry and I are taking our 5th trip to Europe since 2005.  We love European history, food, wine and lifestyle, and plan on keep going back until either we lose interest (we won't), run out of $$$ (a distinct possibility) or can't walk as much as is required to see the sights in our way (coming fast).  Europe is not handicapped accessible, and we are fast approaching that age when physical strength and endurance are waning, and comfort becomes the goal.  So, will this be our last trip?  Maybe. I hope not but, distinctly, maybe.

This trip we have a couple of tag-a-longs (besides you who read daily from home).  Jerry's sister DeeAnn Reed and her husband Dave from Muscatine, Iowa (Jerry's hometown) are coming with us for about half of the trip.  They haven't traveled much, and after some copious amounts of wine at Thanksgiving dinner this last year, they decided to take the plunge and come along.  They will fly with us to Rome, travel to Florence, Pisa, Genoa, and Nice.  Then they will fly home.  We will continue to travel in France.

So, Geography lesson now.  Because I am a teacher, this is supposed to not only be fun, but educational. Check out the map above.  We fly from Minneapolis to New York, New York to Rome on March 7 and 8th.  This is the torturous part of the trip, and we have tried to be smart about stops, plane seats (yes, Virginia, we paid for the extra 5" of leg room because we are OLD) and departure and arrival times.  Dee and Dave will fly with us.  We arrive in Rome and stay in the eternal city for 4 nights in a hotel.

Sardine Can with wings

Leonardo Express into Rome from Airport
Hotel Verona - This will be our third visit.  Clean and Cheap and close to everything.
Walking and jet lag recovery is our prescription for Rome.  Dee and Dave will be blown away by the art and food.

Next we train to Florence, Italy which is about halfway up the Italian boot.  We have stayed in Florence twice, LOVE IT!  Home of the Renaissance. We will have a great 2 bedroom 2 bath apartment in the old part of the city.  We will stay here a week exploring and soaking up Tuscany. Probably some day trips from here to Luca, maybe Parma, or ?????
Living room of apartment - even has a back yard!!!
Next, we train to Pisa to see the Leaning Tower (among other things) for a night, then to Genoa which is a seaport town on the Italian Riviera for 2 nights. Home of Christopher Columbus.  Never been there, but looks very interesting!!!! We have 2 hotels for Pisa and Genoa, which by then we will probably be driving each other crazy so we will have separate rooms!  :-)
Hotel Porto Antico - Genoa

Our last stop with the Reeds is Nice, France.  This has been on our bucket list for YEARS and we are spending 5 days there in a great apartment in the old city center.

Another 2 bedroom, with a great balcony that is only 4 blocks from the beach!  Nice has great sights, including wonderful art museums and super restaurants that focus on seafood.  And then of course there are the French Riviera beaches.  Stay tuned for photos.

Dave and DeeAnn will fly home from Nice and Jerry and I will train up to Avignon, France, one of our favorite places.  That part will be in another blog.  You can see, we have our dream vacation planned.  Now just to get there.

So glad you will be traveling with us!  I will post a couple of times before we leave, but daily when we get to Rome.  Let us hear from you and what you are enjoying about the trip.  If you miss a day or two it will be archived on the right of this screen.  Ciao for now!  Jean