Well, the tan has faded but the memories haven’t. C and I have been back now for two weeks and despite being well and truly back to the daily grind, the trip is still firmly imprinted into our minds.
The first country we went to was Italy – a place that has always been very high, if not top, of my list but somehow I’ve managed to miss for all this time. This sounds so lame and I promise to refrain from anything too cheesy whilst divulging travel stories from our honeymoon, but I am so happy that my first experience of Italy was on an occasion as romantic and incredible as our honeymoon and with someone as special to me as Colin. That place is stunning. There are almost no words to describe how much I loved Italy.
The landscape is so varied and picturesque, the people are so laid back (except on the road), the food is delicious and the wine is amazing. What more could you need from a holiday destination?
That said it wasn’t all as dreamy as it sounds – driving was very scary, and very, very stressful. I had previously held on to the somewhat sexist belief that men are supposed to be able to read maps better than women only to discover this is not one of Colin’s best skills (he’s not hopeless, but not as good as I had formerly believed).
We had a GPS system to ‘help’ us when we got stuck, but on the many occasions we really got stuck it didn’t seem to know which roads were open and which were closed and half the time didn’t recognise roads at all. Add this to my not very patient personality and nervous driving, as well as the windy, mountainous roads and the sheer drops, not to mention my first time in the other side of the car and on the other side of the road!! It’s amazing we didn’t kill each other! J
Although we flew into Bologna our first real stop after a lovely long drive through the mountains, was Florence and what a place!! It was here that the first of many of our ‘two idiots abroad stories’ happens. Naturally we were unprepared and didn’t have a map… oops. So we had no idea where we were going when we first went to explore and as we were staying slightly out of the city we were a bit lost.
As most seasoned travellers who use the ‘Europe on a shoestring’ bible would know, the maps in said lonely planet are not very detailed and usually only cover a small area. When we got to the first place where we thought we could find ourselves on the map C says to me, ‘ok so what Rue are we in?’ at which point I fell about laughing at him and swiftly reminded him that Rue is a French word and we were in fact in Italy, where the streets are called ‘Vias’.
Anyway, map reading and navigating all became too much for us so we went and had wine – our first of the trip. Nothing has ever tasted sweeter. After we had re-fuelled our minds (on wine) we returned to our search for the Duomo. Found it. Were amazed by it. Took loads of photos of it… We were at the back of it. Idiots!
When we eventually realised this and went to the front we were awestruck! Oh my lord that place is spectacular!
By this stage it was time for food so we treated ourselves (it was the first night of our honeymoon after all) to a dinner right outside the Duomo – naturally it was mouth-wateringly good and impossible to describe!
More to follow…