Saturday, October 25, 2014

Traveling Through Italy and Paris - Venice Part 1


Paper, I love Paper

View from Water Taxi

Church campus on Burano

Neighborhood in Burano

Laundry day in Burano

Standing on bridge capturing reflection

Lace on Burano - Inspired by original craft

Love the colors of the buildings

Inside Church where we went to a concert

Waiting for concert to begin

Glass Blowing on Murano

Master Glass blower

Standing on Rialto Bridge

View from Bridge

Another view of Rialto Bridge

Public Square on the other side of Bridge

Masks through a window, love the glare

Fresh Fish Market

Colorful Spices

Boats, mode of transportation
Ahhhh, Venice.  I love the colors and the views.  It can be as fast paced or as slow as you want it.  This is part one of the posts on Venice, one of my favorite places to visit.  I would love to return and stay for about a month in an apartment.  Cross the Rialto Bridge and to the the market to get food to cook.  Oh what a joy that would be.

Well until next well dear readers.....Pilgrim

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Traveling Through Italy and Paris - Florence

Dear Reader, this post will my thoughts and impressions of Florence, Italy.  There is a back story as to why my trip began in Venice.  I was supposed to spend a week in Orvieto taking a class related to creating a travel journal; however, I could not afford the cost of an 18 day trip in Europe and so I sadly send an email to the teacher stating that I would not be able to join them.  She replied and suggested that I consider joining the group in Florence and take that part of the journey.  That was something I could save for and afford so that is what I did.

I would meet the group of friends on Sept. 20th.  I was able to get a really good deal on my plane fare, the caveat was that  had to travel on Sept 18th by myself.  Hmm I thought this will be interesting spending a day in Florence by myself.  There were days when I was extremely nervous about this solitary adventure.  I have traveled alone before, but only to places where English was the main language.  I worried if I would be able to handle everything.  I have a translator on my phone so I could always look up words (that was comforting).  So with my Smart Phone I took off.  There were some changes as my connecting flight through Paris was cancelled due to a strike by the Pilots of Air France.  I flew Air Berlin to make connections through Dusseldorf, Germany.

Dusseldorf Airport

Sitting in the Dusseldorf Airport waiting for my connecting flight

Watching TV in German at the Airport

The flight from Dusseldorf was on a plane that is called a Hopper, it is a Propeller Jet.  Since I had never been on a propeller plane before, I was a little taken aback when I saw it.  The ride was pretty nice until we neared  Florence.  There was an unexpected hail storm and we could not land.  The pilot came on and said that he had been advised that it was too dangerous to land so we had to fly around for awhile.  What???????  It was truly interesting.  We landed after about 30 minutes and I made my way through immigration, got a stamp from Germany in my passport, and found a cab.  So far so good.

Arrived at the hotel, left my luggage in the room and went out to explore.

Remnants of Hail Storm in Florence - Sept. 19th

Candy Store in Florence

Tower connected to the Duomo (Cathedral) in Florence

Duomo in the Public Square in Florence

Out side of the Academia Galleria in Florence

Mother with Child in Museum

Beautiful depiction of Jesus on the Cross

Carousel on the way to the Uffizi Museum  so quaint and beautiful

Arno River in Florence

 Uffizi Museum - Botticelli painting

Another take your breath away painting

First paintings I saw when I entered the Uffizi, unexpected, simple and touching

I was so touched by the art 

Ceiling in hallway on the 2nd floor of the Uffizi

Mesmerizing, it is amazing that many painters were also sculptors

I think this is the gift shop door, but not sure  Just liked the decal

Items from Church

A portion of the stole of the Bishop

There are times when pictures tell that story and there is no need for additional words.  I had the opportunity to visit paper stores and buy wonderful paper, Purchased art from a street artist that made me smile, and enjoyed the beauty of the city.  One thing I have learned is that at this point of my travel journey I want to not do touristy things, but get an apartment for a week or two and immerse myself in the actual life of the place.

Next week - Venice, Murano and Burano.  Until then.....pilgrim

Friday, October 10, 2014

Traveling Through Italy and Paris - Excellent Cuisine

Dear Reader, in this blog post we will travel through Florence, Venice and Paris through food.  Oh it was so fun to experience the delightful tastes of each place.  Hope you have eaten and have a full tummy as you view these wonderful delights.
Lunch in the Piazza on Sunday in Florence
Fried Zuccini and Lamb Shank in Florence.  Dinner on Sunday Night
Pasta and Sausage Shells in Venice
Duck Breast in Paris
Cheese Plate after main course in Paris
Foie Gras Appetizer at the start of the Riverboat Cruse dinner in Paris

Pulled Pork Sandwich in Dusseldorf Germany Airport

Rigatoni with Sausage and Truffles in Florence.

There were so many great meals.  The cuisine is such an important part of travel.  From Excellent 
Gelato in Florence and Venice (oh do I love gelato), to the best French Fries (Pomme Frittes) I have ever eaten in Paris, each meal introduced me to the culture through food.  I tried items I had never new to me, Duck breast  and Foie Gras and both were excellent.  I had Orange Fanta in Italy which is 100 times better than the Fanta we have in the US and I was in Orangina heaven in Paris (I love this carbonated orange drink).  

Food was just one part of this trip, but it was an important part.

Next week, a closer look at Florence.

Please leave a comment, it is always good to hear from friends and visitors.

until next week......pilgrim