Thursday, 26 August 2010

Seventh instalment

Here are some more photos of Sirmione :-)

This clever sculpture was in the middle of the pavement in front of the castle - the left hand side is concave and the right convex:

Near it was this stall selling lemons and chillis, and just beyond it was the fresh fruit stall where we picked up some coconut to try. The Girl wasn't too sure about the coconut!

The castle, with its swallow-tail crenellations, dominates the town when you approach it by road from the south or by boat from the southern or eastern part of the lake.

The castle was built by the Scaligeri family of Verona - we saw many signs of their presence in the area throughout our holiday, particularly of course while visiting Verona itself.

After climbing many steps we were able to reach the top of the tallest tower of the castle - worth it for the spectacular views :-)

From the sublime to the ridiculous! I had a bit of a shock when I went to use the public loos - even the ladies had holes in the floor... (Apologies in advance for this photo!)

We wandered through the extremely narrow and mainly traffic-free streets for a while, then found somewhere for lunch - I had to try some proper Italian spaghetti bolognese, and it was lovely :-) As was the espresso, and the ice cream we all had for pudding! (We're back to the sublime now!)

After lunch we took the little road train to the far end of the peninsula to visit the ruins of a Roman villa.

You may have noticed the grey skies in the earlier shots? And now the hoods and umbrellas up? Yes, we had a few short downpours, but luckily each was quite shortlived and we had clearer spells in between. The Boy got quite damp though!

We were impressed by the sheer size of the villa - it felt more like a Roman village! And oh, what stupendous views they must have had...

We walked back through Sirmione and caught the next bus to Peschiera. While waiting for the hotel's shuttle bus I finally remembered to photograph one of the pedestrian crossings to remind me to tell this story!

At the welcome meeting at our hotel, the local rep explained the zebra crossing situation to us.
Drivers are, by law, supposed to stop if you're on the crossing. This is always interpreted to mean that you are actually ON the crossing, so if you don't have your foot on the road they won't stop for you. You have to be pretty brave to step out though! Here's a tip: look at the approaching driver. If they meet your eyes, you're probably OK to step out, they should stop. If they don't meet your eyes, don't do it. If they're wearing sunglasses, don't even think about it!


scrappyjacky said...

We had the same experience with zebra crossings....we decided it was safer to let an Italian start crossing....and then nip along behind them.

Rhona said...

I love the views from the castle and from the villa - what stunning scenery! Yes, I remember the drivers in Italy very well ;o) xx

SarahLP said...

What a lot of reactions this post prompted from me..

LOL - The Girl's face eating coconut
Eek - that ladies' loo
Wow!! - those ice-creams!
Awww - pics of The Boy and you and The Doctor (I presume!)
Yikes - the zebra crossing

Maria Ontiveros said...

I love castles!!! My favorites were all in Northwest Wales but to be honest we didn't really visit in in Italy. Love the shots you have.

debs14 said...

I thought zebra crossings were part of some Italian sport. Like a kind of target practice. Oh, look, a tourist on a white stripe, 5 points ...

JO SOWERBY said...

the toilet incident is forgiven due to the icecream gorgeousness. dont u make a gorgeous young couple , awwwww
Jo xxx

ComfyMom~Stacey said...

I've heard of those toilets but never actually encountered one. Love the castle photos!

Unknown said...

Simply awesome... love that sculpture and the castle looked awesome! The ice cream had me drooling, as did most of the scenic photos... what a fun adventure (except the coconut... I'm with your girl, on that!)

Amy said...

Blogger has gone nutty on me and this post has only appeared now!
What a great lemon shot :-) Nice one of you and The Doctor, oh, that other scenery .. I suppose it's ok too ;-)

Sian said...

I'm loving those Roman villa photos - of course! And the cocnut one - great expression, one I agree with entirely

Cheri said...

Another fabulous round of photos! You certainly had a lot of visual stimulation on this trip. Having never encountered a toilet sunk into the floor (eewwwww) I'm wondering, how does one manage to utilize these facilities without either stepping in someone else's pee or splashing on their own shoes & pants while going??? (Can you tell I'm not a camper and have never had to pee in the woods either???).

Anonymous said...

Another great set of photos, but my favorite is of the ice cream--oh my, that looks delicious! I like Jacky's idea for the zebra crossing!