Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Normally I don't worry too much about “looking like a tourist.” I mean, I am a tourist and honestly, over here the tattoos seem to be a dead giveaway. Today however, we had the Ultimate Tourist Experience. My mom is with us for the week and we went to Pisa where we rented one of those four person bike deals that made us about the same size as the ubiquitous Smart cars. Pisa has tiny lanes that are filled with pedestrians and a smattering of cars that are brave/foolish enough to drive inside the walled city. As if riding those things isn't bad enough, we kept turning down one-way streets (and finally got lost altogether), got a flat tire and had to contend with Vaughn yelling “Ciao!” at every person on the street.
We had a good time in Pisa though. It's entertaining to watch everyone in various poses all pretending to be holding up the famous tower. I finally convinced Jacob to one-up everyone by giving me an 'airplane ride' so that I could hold up the tower balanced on his feet. Despite the fact that we didn't quite pull it off and Jacob griped at me for 'hurting his back', people took pictures of us trying to pull it off. Mission accomplished.
My mom flew into Florence on Saturday and we picked her up after spending two days camped out in Fiesole which is just outside of Florence and 400 years older. We stayed at a campground that was pricey at 40 Euros a night but we were in a sweet little trailer and the place had a gorgeous view, giant pool, and the restaurant by the pool blasted what sounded like the lesser-known hits of Air Supply each night. It was just the ticket after the hecticness of Rome and Vaughn was in heaven playing ping-pong on the concrete table with Jacob.
We're spending the week at a villa that is high in the hills with a great view of the Alps in one of two apartments connected to the owner's home. We've not spent a ton of time here because we've been on the go, hitting Lucca (about an hour and a half south) yesterday, Pisa today and Cinque Terre tomorrow. I'm hoping that come Wednesday I'll be sitting in the grass and watching the man next door herd his sheep. I like walking around the property barefoot and watching his cattle dog move the sheep from section to section and the occasional drama when one of those suckers decides to break with the pack.

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