Friday, September 29, 2023

Travel notes and pics

Our recent trip to Croatia and Italy is about two weeks behind us now, and my internal clock has adjusted back to the time zone in which I live. 

The flight back always seems easier, but recovery seems longer. For several days I woke in the middle of the night and had trouble going back to sleep, which is uncharacteristic of me, as I am blessed to be a good sleeper. 

It was another great journey, and as usual, I give kudos to Wife for planning it all. We were in Croatia for ten days with our friends R and P. We rented a car in Dubrovnik, our first destination, and from there visited Korcula, Split, Plitvice Lakes National Park and Motovun, all in Croatia, before driving into Italy and dropping R and P in Venice. 

Wife and I had been to Venice in 2019, and when we caught a glimpse of the Grand Canal, we could not resist a quick return visit to one of our favorite cities. We bummed a ride on R and P's water taxi to their hotel and enjoyed seeing some of the landmark sites we so enjoyed on our previous trip. 

From there, Wife and I were on our own. We spent one night in Bologna, where we went on a walking food tour the next morning, before driving to our final destination, a charming bed and breakfast in little Tuscan Village, that was literally at the end of a dirt road. From there we took day trips to Sienna, Assisi and other places, and one day we went to an Italian cooking class, which was great fun. 

Croatia was an incredibly interesting country. About two-thirds of the time, we were in coastal locations, and the hilltop/ocean vistas were breathtaking. Traveling inland to Plitvice National Park provided a contrast to that, and the gorgeous hilltop village of Motovun had a distinct Italian/Tuscan influence. 

And speaking of Italy, Wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our time there. I also give kudos to Wife, and our friend R, for driving in both countries. In Italy, the speed limit "laws" are more like suggestions. For me, it was plenty stressful just being a passenger. I had no intention of getting behind the wheel.  

I am happy to share more details for those interested. (I don't delude myself into thinking you want a blow-by-blow, but if anyone is thinking of traveling to these places, I will be happy to share information. Send an email.) 

A few pictures below: 

The Adriatic from our hotel room in Dubrovnik

Walking Dubrovnik's city walls

Dubrovnik at night

Seafood in Croatia was scrumptuous

Beautiful Adriatic waters

Plitvice Lakes National Park

Breathtaking dinner spot in Motovun

Sunrise in Tuscany
View from our window at our Tuscan Bed and Breakfast

We made bread at our Italian cooking school. Heavenly.

Monday, September 18, 2023

Back home

Coastline in Dubrovnik, Croatia

On August 31st, Wife and I boarded a plane in Nashville bound for Toronto. In Toronto we boarded a plane bound for Paris. And in Paris, we boarded a third plane, this one bound for Dubrovnik, Croatia.

In January of this year, Croatia was a country I had scarcely heard of. A few weeks later, Wife suggested we go there. We talked with another couple, with whom we traveled in England and France last year, and they were in. 

Wife and the lady from the couple met multiple times over the months and began to plan an itinerary. The four of us would spend about ten days in Croatia, after which we would travel together to Venice, at which point we would part company. Our friends would spend some time in Venice, where we visited in 2019, while Wife and I would spend a few days in Tuscany. 

We returned from this wonderful trip this past Saturday, September 16th. Fortunately, we made the return trip in only two legs -- Rome to Montreal, and Montreal to Nashville. That third leg on the trip over was a real killer. 

I will not bore you with a play-by-play but will post more pictures soon with a few more details. 

For now, suffice it to say it was a great trip. I'm still a bit jet-lagged but overall, no worse for the wear. 

More to come.