Colin Hall


Colin Hall

Hi there. Colin Hall here. This is my first travel blog. I thought it would be a good way for friends and family to keep up with me (and to keep up with myself).

I hope you enjoy.
Much Love,

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome October 13th 2014

October 14 Rome We woke up early and I was feeling a bit better. We took a train (2 stops to Rome). I was really hoping I would have more time in Rome, but unfortunately I only had half a day. I was a bit stressed about finding my way around, but managed to find the correct train to the Vatican with Andreas help. I got off the train and found the Vatican. After several security checks I made my way in. There were more huge sculptures and cloth painting along the way. The ceilings were immaculately painted. I eventually got around the hoards of people and made it to the Sistine Chapel. You are not allowed to photograph or talk in this area. The area is very small and with all the people it's claustrophobic. ... read more

Europe » Italy » Umbria » Assisi October 13th 2014

We took the train to Spello. I saw a dog that looked like my Jack Russell Terrier Shakes and his name was Spello. Spello was a neat little town. We walked all the way up another hilly village. We ended up at the winery for our wine tasting. The winery is called Enoteca Properzio. Irene Angelini and her father own this family business, The wine tasting was conducted by Irene. We tried a white and a few reds. My favorite was the Alter Ego Merlot/San Giovesse blend. We also tried 2 different olive oils. I bought a huge bottle that is supposed to last 2 years for around $35 Euro. We also stopped at Assisi along the way and got to see the tomb of St. Francis. I bought a couple of things for the parents ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 12th 2014

I woke up not feeling so great (probably from the rain). I had a washer in my hotel and attempted to wash some clothes, but they do not use dryers here. I had to hang clothes on the window seal per the natives. There are some amazing statues and churches in Florence. You feel like a small doll in a HUGE dollhouse. The statue of Medusa particularly stood out. Maybe because of the Clash of the Titans movie I saw so many times growing up. I got up early and had some pastries and espresso. I finally met up with Andreas and the Harrington's and we made it over to the Statue of David. This was another WOW moment. The detail in the status is amazing. You can see his veins and huge feet and hands. ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 11th 2014

We got up and had a small breakfast at Vita Largo Alinari and headed to The Uffizi, This was several levels of amazing paintings and sculptures. I took a lot of photos to study later. The most impressive to me was the Michaelangelo "Holy Family" painting. Wayne and I were craving red meat. We found a nice restaurant by our hotel called La Pros..??? We had a Tuscan T-Bone. It was good, but not as seasoned as ours. Wayne, April, Brittany and I did a little shopping. The girls did not find much. I bought a nice leather wallet that we think is authentic for around 30 Euros. I also bought a soccer jersey per my tradition. The guy said Pirlo is the best player and I preferred the Italian jersey over the purple Florence jersey. ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Pisa October 10th 2014

We took a train to Pisa, dropped off our bags at the bus stop, and headed to see the Leaning tower. We hopped on board a very very cramped bus, Andrea warned us of pick pockets. Finally arriving at Pisa, we walked our way up to the gates leading towards the leaning tower, The size of the tower is larger then I thought. It was an odd sensation seeing something in person after seeing it in books and tv for so long. The same sensation I got when I saw the Statute of Liberty. We go our tickets and headed to the ... Cathedral nearby. This was a beautiful church with large painting. A transparent tomb of one of the saints really stood out. A few of us decided to walk the Pisa steps inside. After ... read more

Europe » Italy » Liguria » Cinque Terre October 9th 2014

I had cereal, espresso, blood orange juice, and pastry. I put my jogging shoes on and shorts and my new Italia jacket as we headed for the train station. After a few stops, we went for a long hike over a hill. This was very challenging and steep. We saw a few wine vineyards along the way, but they pick the grapes in September. We visited the 5 village of the region, but train after the 1 hour and a half hike. The group got a tad split up as it was a challenging climb. Each village was similar with great views of the Mediterranean Sea. The villages are Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. In October of 2011 they had a bad blood which damaged a lot. Cars cannot reach the villages. We had some ... read more

Europe » Italy » Liguria » Cinque Terre October 8th 2014

We hopped aboard several trains, before a stop at Milan for lunch. People seemed to be more fashionable and good looking there. I also noticed that Italians are usually rather thin. We summized this is due to the amount they walk in combination with cooking with olive oil (as opposed to butter). The locals also do not smile much. They seem more stoic. I had a sort of ham and cheese sandwhich with very thick bread. Tonight we are taking a Pesto Class which I am excited about. After being with several Australians, it makes me want to visit one day. They are teaching me lingo such as dodgy, no worries, wanky beast, and quick fast. We are staying at a bed and breakfast type place called Hotel Pensione Moderna in is very charming and ... read more

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice October 7th 2014

I started off the day with boiled eggs, coffee, cereal, and fruit, We then took a walking tour of Venice. We visited the fish market in Pescheria. It was bustling early in the morning. They had lots of strange exotic fish, pasta, and fruits. You must ask permission before you take a photo. They also really do not like it if you are touching everything. We took a sort of Gondola ride over to St Mark's Square and viewed St. Mark's Basilica. A very beautiful church that is being restored. You must walk on tables to get through as the fear of floods is always around. We also viewed the Bridge of Sighs and Doge's Palace. Our group broke up. Some went to see Glass Blowing and Lace making at the 2 islands. I hung out ... read more

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice October 6th 2014

I flew in via Little Rock to Atlanta to Amsterdam to Venice. I was pretty drowsy and watched X-Men and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes on the way. I gathered my bags and headed to the currency exchange. I exchanged $400 American Dollars for around $250 Euros. I then took a bus to Venice. I got off and got lost for about 2-3 hours trying to find the getto (Jewish area). Searching for the Kosher House Giardino deii Melograni (hotel), I eventually called the group leader Andreas. He came and got me around San Marcado? I settled in and met the rest of the group (around 12). 2 Canadians, Australians, and one American (me). Venice was more bustling then I thought. There is a distinct smell to the city. I want to say almost ... read more

North America » United States » Arkansas » Little Rock July 8th 2011

I have had a week now to reflect on what I feel was the trip of a lifetime. It was a hard decision for me to decide to do this trip. It was a sacrifice of money, time away from family and pets, and a lot of vacation hours. In the end, I feel this is on the top 5 list of things that I have done. I discovered a great group of 10 friends. I hope that we stay in touch. Each brought something unique to the table. I learned how to converse with other people despite language barriers. I met 2 Haitians I feel I will always be linked to. I found out that they are not too unlike me. I learned that you do not need material wealth or objects. You need friends, ... read more
The Crew on the last Day Petionville
Kissmer and I

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