Published: September 16th 2008September 16th 2008
It rained overnight and Saturday started as a grey morning. We had a deadline of 9:00 am to return the hirecar to the local airport, so that was the focus of our morning. We were on our way, following the instructions dictated by the GPS.
"recalculating...."oops, not again. Sometimes the most direct route is the tiniest of back streets. Roadblock.
"recalculating....." silence. then more silence.
"sorry, can't calculate new route..." blank screen. blank screen and silence. bugger, look for signs.
Yes, the airport! all good, hand the keys back and no more driving for a while. Now all we have to do is get back to Perugia and then the bus to Assisi.
The buses are slow, but don't you get to see a lot of the local scenery. As we debussed at the city gates of Assisi it rained.
"did you bring the brolly ???" "no, me niether....."
Every second person was wearing a colourful flimsy plastic raincoat or poncho, so i went looking for some. They proved very handy in keeping us completely almost dry for most of the day.
We climbed the winding path up through the village to the cathedral where St Francis is entombed and were
gobsmacked at the beauty & splendour of it all. We haven't seen the Sistine Chapel yet, but the ceilings will have to be pretty special to beat this. There was a Franciscan monk standing right in the middle of the cathedral with a microphone calling loudly "SILENZIO !!" to the hoards as their collective voices rose above a wisper. He seemed a little out of place, using modern technology in this ancient monument.
We explored the streets & the alleys and enjoyed the peace & serenity of the whole village for a few hours, and managed to keep ourselves almost dry in our gladbag raincoats.
Assisi is a magical place, and on leaving and seeing the whole town from a distance, we realised that we had again only just scratched the surface of another ancient village.
There are more photos below