265-267: Trapartytime in Trapani – but not for us !

265 – Sunday 10th January 2016:  Trapani and Wine

The Italian Squeejy vans game continued through the evening, become a Squeejy cars party.  Despite a huge expanse of tarmac we had two cars of courting and flirting LOUDLY youngsters on one side.  They were soon joined on the other side by quite a number of cars coming and going with loud boombox ‘music’ (I use the word with caution and I am NOT against modern music … I have 5 Seconds of Summer album!) with people popping sweets (!) and leaving little plastic bags all over the ground!  20-30 youngsters in loud party mode. We should have moved over the other side, but bed was too warm and you think they’ll be gone soon!  They weren’t!  J reliably informs me they departed at about 3.00 am…. I slept the sleep of the innocent! IMG 4553

I did a 4km run though the docks and town and spotted a small veg market and the fish market.  There are serious fishing smacks here, so it is no surprise there was a fairly large fish market.  I purchased 1.4 kilo of cod at EUR10/kilo.  He even filleted it for me, leaving the livers too …. only had cod liver in tablet form, but sure I’ll find something to do with them!

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IMG 4582Huge cauli for EUR1 …. become 4 lunches of soup for us … thank goodness for the freezer!

We walked around the town and it is very attractive … some fairly smart shops.  And being Sunday, the locals were out in force.

IMG 4560No political correctness here … it is actually the National Institute for war wounded persons.

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As well as the time, this showed the days of the week, and adjacent ….

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the astrological clocks

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And another fun Christmas tree … still think the empty booze bottles wins though!

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Would that be a Marsala? … small portions, so in the next bar, we switched to …

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white wine … followed by another  ….

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Again, non PC … the bar invites people to flirt and smoke!

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Hoping dates will start to appear soon in the markets.

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We are camped up near the castle on the far right.

 

266 – Monday 11th January 2016:  Seeing Erice and NOT Seeing It!

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All the nuisances of Saturday night had not returned so we had a good night, once J nobly got up and disposed of couple of tin cans that were acoustically rattling around us, as the wind had got up.  We planned to stay in Trapani again tonight, but we thought that 3 nights in the same spot is pushing our luck.  We had identified a large car park on our walk yesterday, but it was packed, so we ended up back at the port.

By now, time was pressing … we had to fair route march the 2km to the bus station to catch the bus to Erice.  The busses only run a couple of times a day and since Erice is a hill town, we did not fancy driving up.  We had checked the weather forecast … Erice should be 17c, only 1 degree cooler than Trapani, with just a few clouds.  Obviously Erice does not subscribe to Accuweather!  The sun made an appearance a couple of times during our visit and decided to come out permanently when we left on the 3.15 bus!  The rest of the time it was a cold, damp pea souper. We attempted to see the sights … got lost (K had a sense of humour failure at the lack of road names in the guide book) …. we decamped to a bar.  But they did not do food, so we had to decamp to what seemed to be the only open restaurant for a speed starter, before heading back for the bus.

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The Christmas market shutting up … no idea what the square was … too foggy to see road names!

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The very pink bar we decamped to.  Erice is known for its almond pastries (K can vouch for these 🙂 and marzipan.

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One of K’s Dad’s favourite sayings is ‘to tear the arse out of it” …. had it not been EUR20, we’d have brought some back.

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Erice makes some good red!

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Not sure how sea worthy this is?  On Saturday the bilge pumps were going and constant jets of water were being ejected.  On Sunday there was no pump and it was already a foot lower in the water.

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Fish night:  Starter was the cod livers:  marinated in orange juice and pan fried with sultanas soaked in Marsala …. don’t bother:  tasteless.  Cod to followed, which we did eat!

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Check this for a sunset!  No digital enhancements!

 

267 – Tuesday 12th January 2016:  Onto Capo San Vito

We shopped on the way and headed for a campsite that a Belgian couple had told us about …. only EUR12 incl. electric – El Bahira Camping Village … would be completely hideous in high season, but we are one of only three vans.  Soup for lunch whilst we chatted to a German lad next door … he gave us some good tips for the area, so we may well stay here for a few days.  A washing machine load and a little hand washing done.  J slaughtered K at tennis … we were on a full sized court which took some getting used to after the one at Punta Braccetto.  However, we were close to the sea … crashing waves against volcanic rock with amazing views of the mountains … I am blaming this distraction for my lack of tennis skill or performance!

178 -179: City and Coast – Paudua and Chioggia

178 – Thursday 15th October 2015 – Padua … to be or not to be, but not in Elsinore?

We woke and thought are we a bit citied out.  Change of plan … need to see water and less buildings so headed for the sea ….  Drove for a bit and passed so close to Padua, a small change of plan again … into Padua we went.  We had picked Kerstin up from here in August and the little we had seen looked interesting and she had bequeathed us some bumpf.

We refrained from paying the EUR13 to get into the Byzantine mosaics … seems you had to book way in advance and be decontaminated for 15 mins for a 15 min viewing …. our lack of showering since Milan might have left us in the decontamination unit for a bit longer than 15 mins!!!

However, it is a good place to visit …. Basillica San Antonia, patron saint, was free, yay, and a whole complex of church, cloisters and museum (thankfully shut or we might have felt obliged to enter!).  The relics of various saints were are bit perturbing … we could even see a set of teeth.  You, dear reader, are lucky … no internal photos allowed!

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Padua: Modern door on a rebuilt church – rather refreshing that they did not try, as so many others have, to recreate what was there before.

Palle de Valle, just by where we parked and possibly Padua's most striking area

Prato della Valle, just by where we parked and possibly Padua’s most striking area.

Fab view looking back at the church near the parking .. so many statues.

Fab view looking back at the church near the parking .. so many statues.

No statue ... living and breathing!

No statue … living and breathing!

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Into the main city proper and the Chuch of San Antonio on the right

Into the main city proper and the Chuch of San Antonio on the right

So few people look up - usually worth it

So few people look up – usually worth it

An illegal photo taken inside the Church of San Antonio ... the sculptures around the shrine were skillful

An illegal photo taken inside the Church of San Antonio … the sculptures around the shrine were skilful.

The cloisters

The cloisters

Spot J's unexpected audience - he is on map reading and tour planning today duties!

Spot J’s unexpected audience – he is on map reading and tour planning today duties .. J that is, not the pigeon!

Lovely architecture throughout the city.

Lovely architecture throughout the city.

Old horse ties have found a new use

Old horse ties have found a new use

Our picnic lunch view

Our picnic lunch view. A student city so lots of bikes.

Adjacent to the 'erb.

On the side of the ‘erb market

Drove onto Chioggia, part of the same complex of lagoons on the Adriatic Sea as Venice, and one of the main fishing ports of Italy.  Eventually we returned to a parking we had previously spurned.  But only after a stop to find an alternative Parking when a lady reversed her mini into our bike rack … fortunately no damage to us other than a slightly wobbly bike rung stand, compared to her shattered rear window; we returned to the Parking we had spurned.  Night passed fine with a minor exception taken to the local busses running their engines from 5.00 am before departing and more inconsiderate rain hammering our roof…

 

179 – Friday 16th October 2015 – Chioggia

K ran solo as J still nursing remnants of a cold, and spotted laundrette and post office – both required!

Leisurely start; think we are a bit citied out and exhausted after Milan, Verona, Soave, Vicenze and Padua …. Chioggia is essentially still a locals town. We chatted to our German and Belgian neighbours, to some Canadian ladies and an Irish chap, who spotted J’s Irish Rugby cap.  All relaxed and friendly.   We cleaned Chardonnay and took two bags of laundry f(or a walk) to the laundrette.  Got bored watching the machines spin so vacated to a nearby bar for a shared rather pleasant red.  Earlier we had received some sad news … our friend Andrea had suffered a massive heart attack and died, so raised a glass to her.  She was fit and not even retirement age … again another.

Subsequent walk up to the end of the spit and walk back along one of the side streets – carrying bags of now clean laundry!    Lovely town.  Having paid for 24 hrs, we are going to use it and stay put till tomorrow.  We all need a down day sometimes.

Pix speak for themselves …

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Not sure the Vespa would cope with the Ikea laundry bag … certainly not image wise!

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More real than Venice ... lots of washing out.

More real than Venice … lots of washing out.

Neither of us had seen this before ... posters on lots of walls to commemorate the dead.

Neither of us had seen this before … posters on lots of walls to commemorate the dead.

Fishing is the main industry here; one Italy's major fish trading hubs ... but still local fishermen ... work clothes drying

Fishing is the main industry here; one Italy’s major fish trading hubs … but still local fishermen … work clothes drying

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A proper haberdashers shop ... when I used to dressmaker, I had to go to London to get anything like the choice.

A proper haberdashers shop … when I used to dressmaker, I had to go to London to get anything like the choice of buttons.

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Sunset over the boats and nets on our walk home

Sunset over the boats and nets on our walk home – a perfect end.