Rain in Voltera, Sunshine in Siena

Trip Start May 06, 2010
Trip End May 16, 2010

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Flag of Italy  , Tuscany,
Saturday, May 8, 2010

On Saturday morning we got up at seven so we could have a full day of sightseeing.  The farm we were staying on served us breakfast consisting of pastries, yogurt, cereal, and VERY strong coffee that Chris thought was wonderful.  I thought it was terrible!  There was a group of Europeans sitting next to us drinking red wine with breakfast.  I thought I loved wine until I saw them...yuck!  During breakfast it was very cold and overcast.  Chris and I were both regretting not bringing tennis shoes, because our toes were so cold.  I decided to bring jeans, a long sleeve sweater and a scarf at the last minute.  I'm so glad I did!

After breakfast, we started our hour or so drive to Volterra.  The clouds started moving and we saw blue skies!  The drive was even more beautiful than the day before.  We pulled off a couple of times to take pictures..tripod and all!  I was very anxious to get to Volterra, because Saturday was market day in Volterra.  We finally got there and parking was crazy due to the market.  There were little old Italian men and women walking all over the place.  Once we finally got parked and almost got to the market it started pouring.  I mean hard rain where we were still getting soaked under our umbrellas.  Chris was getting really wet and so was his camera, so we decided to head back into town to take cover under and archway.  I was fine with that, because the market was mainly selling local goods like jeans, underwear, shampoo, etc.  They were not selling things I was shopping for, like jewelery and ceramics.  Volterra looked like a really unique town, but I have a bad memory of it due to the down pour.  It is known for alabaster, which I have now decided I don't really like.  We decided we should get back to Siena to enjoy the rest of our day.  Of course, the blue skies returned as we were leaving. 

We finally got to Siena and this time Chris brought his GPS with him instead of leaving it in the car and he turned it to the walking mode.  Before we left Atlanta, Chris entered all of the restaurants we wanted to go too into his GPS.  We walked straight to the Trattoria Darb suggested thanks to the GPS.  The restaurant was Trattoria la Tellina.  It was a tiny restaurant that was VERY busy and they only had one waitress.  Chris got Wild Boar and loved it.  I tasted it and it was much better than I thought it would be.  We enjoyed our meal and had great vino!  Great recommendation, Darbie! 

After lunch, Chris took pictures of the neighborhood and all of their flags.  We took a short walk to the Duomo.  It was weird, because the night before it was all lit up with no one around.  During the day it was packed with tourists, primarily European tourists.  I did meet a couple in the Duomo Restroom that was from Birmingham.  It is so strange to me to share a restroom with men and women.  Anyways, when I told them I went to Auburn the man said "Roll Tide".  Another couple that was with them overheard the conversation and came up and said "War Eagle".  It was day two of our trip and we had met another Auburn Grad.  We met another Auburn Graduate the day before in Montepulciano.  Besides the couples in the Duomo and the couple in Montepulciano, we did not meet any other Americans in Tuscany.  The Duomo was very Gothic.  You were allowed to take photos, without flash, so Chris was very happy about that!  From there we went to the Duomo Museo.  Chris was much more impressed than me.  Most of you know I'm not a big fan of museums!  I was ready to go shopping.  The only reason we got tickets to the museum was so we could climb the unfinished addition of the Duomo. The climb up wasn't too bad except we had had too much wine at lunch and the staircases were spiral.  That combination made me a little dizzy.  It was all worth it for the view at the top.  I decided to head back down and find the restroom.  I left Chris up top to take more pictures.  He was supposed to meet me by the bathrooms.  When he got to the bathrooms they were roped off, so he thought I must have left.  Well, the guy roped the bathroom off while I was actually in the restroom.  When I came out and saw no Chris, I waited for 10 minutes thinking he was still taking pictures.  I started worrying, but didn't want to leave because then I could not get back inn.  Finally, I left and found him outside.  We decided then that we would not split up again.  I guess that's what life was like before cell phones!  Once we found each other we headed to the Il Campo to have a drink on the square.  Everything I read said food on the main squares is more expensive and not that good.  However, we choose a restaurant Rick Steve's recommended and we had some wine and bruschetta.  It was the best bruschetta we had the entire trip and it was reasonably priced! 

Since the weather had finally cleared up Chris wanted to get back to the farmhouse to take pictures of the sunset, but I wanted to get a little shopping in :)  I bought my niece, Audrey, an adorable wooden Pinocchio with a nose that could grow!  We went to a local store and got wine, several types of cheeses, and wild boar prosciutto and took it back to our place for dinner.  It was one of my favorite meals in Italy and it was super cheap!  The Wild Boar Prosciutto was awesome and I don't even like regular prosciutto.  When we got back to our place, both of us walked around the Farm and took pictures.  I got bored within 15 minutes and came back to our patio, opened a bottle of wine and started writing in my travel journal.  Chris drove around the area and took beautiful pictures of the sunset.  He came back and set our meal up and it was wonderful.  The next thing I knew, Chris said it was 2AM and we had to get up early to head to Florence!

The day started out cold and rainy, but it turned out to be a perfect day.  I was sad to say good bye to Tuscany!
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