Page 4 of ToBeContinued Travel Blog Posts


Europe » Belgium » Brussels-Capital Region » Brussels May 25th 2017

Brussels In keeping with our usual practice, we decided the first thing to do was figure out where we would be leaving from the next day. The metro dropped us at Gare Nord and we were leaving from Gare Midi so we hiked right across the old city enjoying what we saw but intent on getting to Gare Midi. The Royal Saint-Hubert Galleries were beautiful. They rivaled the Galleria in Milan for looks and prices. I won’t be shopping there any time soon. Well, window shopping maybe. Outside the Gare-Midi (train station) we found an enormous outdoor market. It took forever just to walk through it. Once we figured out the train station we decided to stop for lunch. While waiting for our food, we poured over the map of the old city to decide on ... read more
Statues
Narrow buildings
Royal Saint-Hubert Galleries

Europe » France » Languedoc-Roussillon » Montpellier May 17th 2017

Had a few extra photos (well, many) that seemed to be too many for the last blog. So here they are: a few random shots from Montpellier a bunch from the Montpellier Zoo a few from our day trip to Sète We are off to Brussels to visit the new friends we met in Italy last year so this is ToBeContinued.... read more
Wall Art
Building Art
Graffiti or wall art?

Europe » France » Languedoc-Roussillon » Montpellier May 13th 2017

On the train The trip from Lyon to Montpellier was easy. The French train system makes travel pretty easy once you figure out how to buy the tickets. The signs in the station are very clear, the notifications of the next station and how long it will be before you get there take the guess work out of travel. The Housesit We met Sheila in the station and had a short walk to their apartment. Very convenient. Kevin was out picking up some groceries. Even more convenient. We met Mr. Darcy who, in typical cat fashion, couldn’t really care less who we were. After lunch at a lovely outdoor restaurant, while Sheila did some last minute work related tasks before their two month trip, Kevin took us on a walk around the old city. It’s not ... read more
Mr. Darcy
Sharing a drink
Rue de Barcelone

Europe » France » Rhône-Alpes » Lyon April 29th 2017

We didn’t expect to be going back to Europe so soon after our 2016 Denmark/Italy adventure. TrustedHouseSitters.org is an organization we joined to find places to stay for free, or at least, free in return for taking care of a pet plus the house. We found one in the south of France that seemed pretty appealing and ended up agreeing to do 36 nights in two blocks in April-June 2017. Then off we went to Denmark and Italy (see previous blog entries). France was eight months away…. It didn’t seem real…. But it has happened! We are now in Lyon, France on our way to the house, or rather pet, sit. But it almost didn’t happen. Faithful blog readers might remember that our last European trip was delayed a year because I fell and fractured my ... read more
Dianne and Peter go to France
Studio suite in Lyon
The Rhône river

Europe » Italy » Basilicata » Matera October 13th 2016

Dianne had planned this trip meticulously and the last stop was Matera. I had limited knowledge of what went on there. I heard something about the sassi (plural of sasso) being a bunch of caves where people had lived even into the 1960s. But I wasn’t prepared for what we saw. I can’t begin to describe how this ancient town developed. In an article in The New Yorker in 2015, D.T. Max gives a pretty good description of Matera di Sassi. Click here to learn the city’s history. Coincidently, he stayed in the same B&B we did. The city is gradually being gentrified and in another generation the original residents won’t recognise it. Our B&B on Via Fiorentini between Sasso Barisano and Sasso Caveoso is pretty upscale. We discovered one similarity to an old cave dwelling: ... read more
Same view at night
Our B&B
Our place from the street

Europe » Italy » Apulia » Martina Franca October 11th 2016

When we arrived in Martina Franca our host told us he would pick us up at the train station. He described himself as “an ugly guy with a bad shave”. He was far from ugly but he did have quite a beard. He was very helpful in getting us oriented to the old city. Dianne had done her homework well and our B&B was located in an excellent position for visiting the old city. We set out on our first walkabout to orient ourselves with the old city. We came to St Francis’s Church where it appeared there was a wedding about to take place. We decided to hang around to see the bride. While waiting, we noticed a group of adults in what appeared to be Scout uniforms. Turned out it was a regional training ... read more
Centre of Old Martina Franca
Greenery
New Statue

Europe » Italy » Apulia October 10th 2016

The Lecce visit continued with another road trip. Otranto revisited We had such a good time in Otranto with Bob and Rita that we decided to spend another day there. This time we had to take the train. They told us in the ticket office we had to change trains twice to go 43 kilometres. They aren’t big on announcing things on the regional trains but as we approached the town where the first change was to occur, the conductor came through, telling us to stay on the train right to the second city. Only change once. Whew. However, when we got to the Otranto station to come back, the sign said (we thought) there was no train but a bus would take us back to the transfer point. There were about 5 people on the ... read more
Gate at night
Street lights
San Pietro Basilica in Otranto

Europe » Italy » Apulia » Lecce October 8th 2016

I couldn’t believe Dianne had booked us into Lecce for eight days. Even allowing for trips to other towns in the heel of Italy, eight days, wow. As usual, her decision was a good one. Train woes We had to go back to Bari, change trains and head to Lecce. As experienced train travellers there should be no problem. At least not until the activation machine ate one of our tickets. There was no one in the station to talk to, even in Italian. So Dianne took a picture of the machine showing a red light flashing indicating it was jammed. We climbed on the train, hoping for the best. We were a bit disappointed the conductor didn’t even ask for our tickets. The rest of the trip was uneventful until we arrived in Lecce. Our ... read more
The terrace
City Gates
Architecture

Europe » Italy » Apulia » Trani October 5th 2016

By the sea After three consecutive stays in large cities (Copenhagen, Milan and Rome) it was nice to get back to a seaside city (OK, Copenhagen is by the sea but we didn't see much of it). Trani is also a lot smaller at only about 50,000. It is also the site of my first “epic failure” of “Google Maps”. I had mapped out the route from the train station to the B&B and it looked pretty weird. I should have been suspicious. After a few false starts we realized it had us coming out of the station on the wrong side and making a very roundabout walk to the B&B. The city map posted outside the station cleared up the difficulty and it was easy to find our destination. The B&B was on the second ... read more
Trani train station
B&B room
Half the terrace

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome September 30th 2016

I should have thought to mention in the last blog that on our last day in Rome we travelled to our third country. The Vatican After all our brave comments about walking everywhere, we took the metro to St. Peter’s. The station isn’t that close (our Italian friend said a bus would take us closer) but we opted for the metro so we didn’t have to transfer. The guide books suggest checking the Vatican web site to see what is happening on the date of your visit. We thought we had but... The security to get into St Peter’s Square is pretty intense. Not quite as bad as airline security but a big change from our 2004 visit. We got in fairly quickly and. were amazed by the rabbit warren of fences set up in front ... read more
Not the greatest intro
Peace restored
Main altar from the back




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