3084 KM: reunion in Rome

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Empty avenues in the sunset. Challenging ourselves by taking the subway during rush hour… We have enjoyed seeing a lot of nice things walking around in the beautiful Rome… We eat fabulous things: roasted artichokes, pasta pajata and ice creams in all colors and flavors…

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Assisi and Lago do trasimeno

Heading towards the end of our mother and daughter journey, we have arrived in Assisi. It was a challenging trip as we entered the city, our navigation kept sending us right through the narrow streets of Assisi, until I almost started cursing, and crying all together…I dropped the car in front of Santa Chiara cathedral and started looking for a local that could help me! And my prayers were heard, a police car just turned the corner…So in fluent italian I was told that to get to our accommodation: ”  Suore di Santa Brigida di Svezia”, I just needed to be on the other side of the cathedral! Piece of cake! Right…

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After many wrong turns and driving through medieval porches we finally got there.  Though the road signs and stoplights are not always helping…

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Later on when we explored the streets of Assisi we found the perfect car to move around in the narrow streets!

 

 

We visited the minerva temple transformed in a catholic church, the basilica of Saint Fransisco, the cathedral of San Rufino and its crypto, the tomb of San Fransisco… Saw a lot of shiny relics and religious artifacts…and were very happy to stumble upon an ancient music interments exhibition featuring a vitrine with famous conductor sticks: from Verdi, to Karajan, Toscanini… And we were surprised that some of the paintings were absent due to renovation works, but I found a substitute model!…

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Had ice cream in a chic café, and became incrowd at Café central because there was no internet at the convent, though the sisters had email contact with me about the booking.

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Finally we had most of our diners at the convent, as it was simple cooking that suited us very well…So the convent was made of 10 sisters, 9 from India, and one from Mexico, and all very friendly and smiling…

We took a day off from the heat and busy Assisi, where you can see all kind of tourist: catholic groupies, hippies, old ladies, whole parish on a trip, youngster group on educational trip, numerous types of pilgrims, priests, nuns, monks…in all colors and robes…and we went to Lago di Trasimeno…

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Then it was time to hit the road and drive towards Rome Fiumincino and pick up Tom on time…thought the italian “highways” are definitely not Europe’s best ( first place shared by Slovenia and Hungary…), and we were held up by bumpy roads and road accidents, and (let’s call it) creative italian driving style!…We did make it on time to the airport..

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Lido di Savio

After going from one city into the next we finally arrived into what suddenly feels like a luxury harbor! A room with shower and toilet and….air conditioning!!! Even a tv set is available, if one gets terribly bored from the country side and the seaside! We got offered two bikes to move around the lido, and off we went into the sunset to get some local food: piadina and beer and coke!

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Our wondering continues when this morning  a great homemade breakfast awaits us: warm bread buns, cherry jam, fresh blackberries and raspberries, italian coffee, home baked cookies filled with homemade jam, cake……

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Then we grabbed our bikes and our umbrella ( friendly borrowed from our great hosts Stefania, her husband and their little 3 year old boy) and biked to the secret beach of Lido di Classe, through the pine woods we ended up outside of the over populated beaches onto a 100% italian beach, well almost because a nice belgium lady started chatting us up ( she was living in Italy for the past 20 years and was going soon to a few weeks trip through the Netherlands and Belgium)

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We came back to our cool room, and to our surprise, it had been tidied up will we were chilling on the beach! What a service. while I start using the internet Erna is getting upset at it slow down the network and she can not stream her favorite serie…

 

Venice, or better Zelarino…

We woke up early ( for us then) and left at 8:00 the Balaton Museum to hit the road towards Italy. The way through Slovenia is just beautiful, and we are sorry for all our slovenian friends that we did not stop somewhere to enjoy the beautiful hills, lakes and countryside…

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Around 14:30 we arrived at our destination, the ecogarden, camping site outside of the little town of Zelarino near Venice. We grabbed ourselves a few bio tomatoes, cucumber, an onion and a melon and had a nice lunch…Am I happy we decided after all to still go into Venice, at the ecogarden they have bike you can use, if not all the good bikes are gone, or have a flat tire, so we walked to the bus stop, and as lucky as we are, the bus just arrived and it took us 30 minutes to get into the city. As it was already around 18:00 the temperature and sun were softening, and strangely enough it seemed like very few tourists were on the go! ( the next day we would be disappointed about this…)

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We have visited the Guggenheim Museum, our favorite pieces are from Matisse and Jackson Pollock…

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Nearby the Guggenheim museum happens to be the best pizza bakery of Venice!

 

 

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And of course we made up for the disastrous ice cream experience we had in Hungary with delicious italian ice cream!!! The next day the bus into town was filled to the roof with tourists and we were two of those, we travelled the whole day with the vaporettos around as Erna had suffered and barely survived 14 mosquitos attacks.

I must say, I know I am not a water person, but I did not really feel safe in those little motor boats and I prefer the “pont” in Amsterdam… We even went for a quick dive in the adriatic sea at Lido, of course also there it was crowed, sunny, hot…

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Keszthely

Two nights at the museum!

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We are staying in the guest room of the Balaton Museum!… Something to recommend to anybody… It is a big room with 5 beds, in the seventies style, showers and toilet in the corridor and a small kitchen! We dropped our luggage and went into the town center. The weather has changed in the last days, after a small storm in Székesfehérvár, it is raining now and then, and a bit clouded. We have had our worst ice cream ever! After one bite we had to throw it away! In Erna’ s words: ” smaakt naar uitgekotste citroen ijs!”

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We saw the castle of Keszthely, in the evening we found some nice sweet Kürtőskalács…

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In the evening we took a stroll along the beach boulevard and there was an open air concert of the brass band of the Mill Hill College.

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Today: a day at the beach, blue skies and sunny weather, and of course we could not miss out on lángos and beer! The Balaton is a very shallow lake, you can swim far out and still only 150cm depth, but in case of emergency there is a water brigade, can you see their boat?

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Székesfehérvár

We visited Erna’s grand parents, and they took us to a guided tour of the old city center.

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We saw Kati néni and rubbed her shiny nose for good luck!…

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And as every where you can find locks on bridges, fences…and they do do yarn bombing, gorilla knitting, or wild breien ( whatever you call it!) here too!…

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Liane and Jutta’s paradise on earth…

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Let’ s start we the end! It is always difficult to say goodbye specially when you are with special people, and in a special place…even knowing you will come back doesn’t make it easier to leave… We have spend a couple of idyllic days in an old school in the middle of nowhere surrounded by sandy roads, fields and woods…

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We have made new fury and feathery friends… Found a secret place to jump in the water to cool off…

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Driven through the bushes in the old Lada with 3 dogs in the back seat… And Erna can’t get enough of the horses of course. But it is time to drive on…

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Budapest 2

IMG_6222 IMG_6234Second day in Budapest! We took a 24 hour ticket for public transportation, so we have done it all: metro, tram, bus and hév… It was extremely hot and we barely survived, I actually have to admit I did throw up in the bus, and I am not proud of it… I tried to explain in my best hungarian to a middle aged teeth less bus driver that ” I am not feeling well” and he thought I said he was not all right… Nevertheless we started up at the Buda Castle and visited the National gallery, and the highlights of the fine arts Museum.

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Here some of the work we liked! Look at the bearded guy, something to try guys! We were puzzled how his barber could make his chin hair in such a fashion…barbers in amsterdam, here is a challenge.

We have also seen some less frivolous themes when we stepped into the religious area of the museum.

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For lunch we had a cold strawberry soup, in Hungary the Gyömölcsleves is a popular traditional dish…

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We finished the day with a visit of the Victor Vasarely Museum, that was really great. He was a french-hungarian artist, leading the movement of geometrical visual arts, or “op-art”. Erna said that she could see the influence of the work of Piet Mondriaan in his paintings… The museum was almost empty…so we enjoyed sitting on the big couches and watching…

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We closed off our Budapest adventure with a great family dinner with Erna’s uncle and girlfriend at Náncsi néni vendéglö and Erna had….

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Budapest day one…

On the 5th of july at 18:00 we passed the border between Austria and Hungary, but Erna was too lazy to take a picture! When we arrive in Budapest we have now already behind us: 1517 km! We left Amsterdam on monday 29th of june, a week ago today! we got up early this morning and started walking through the city…

DSC_2550DSC_2543 kopieIMG_6185Back to the roots for Erna! She is a bit shy speaking hungarian, but definitely is enjoying being here! We had a sweet breakfast at Central Kavéház!…

We visited the Basilika, saw some very nice old and new architecture, lots of building and renovating all around the city, some places are closed down, waiting their turn to be renovated…it is a mix of old, new, decayed, massive and ugly…We saw the Hotel Gellert, Astoria, inside courtyards, a nice wall painting, and the famous red postboxes… Unfortunately the fine arts museum is closed till 2018 for renovation, so we certainly will have to come back!

 

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