A short photo journey through Tuscany
This was my third trip to Milan. I wanted to see and do some different things. Airbnb experiences helped me make the most of my time for a very reasonable price. I had arrived in Milan only 5 hours ago, found my Airbnb and was headed over to where our small group would meet to see some of the unique sights that are not always on a guided tour. As I was walking around, I got a text saying they were ready to start and where was I. Seems I did not read the start time but the end time ……MENO MALE. I was just a block away so I got there on time. It was a small group with only 4 people and Caterina, the guide. Two were from Belgium and one from Great Britain. Once again the only American.
Caterina, our guide.
We met near the public gardens (Indro Montanelli) for what would be a 2 1/2 hour walk. We would go from the old to the new. And some of the most ultra modern architecture with prices that would make Manhattan look like a bargin.
One of the classic residences.
Amazing art decorates the outside of these residences.
Our vintage tram a great way to see any city at a slower pace.
Some of the modern building with high price tags.
A Tesla showroom. No price tags.
Piazza XXV Aprile – Porta Garibaldi
I have visited Eataly in Rome and New York City. No I had a chance to roam the one in Milano.
If only my local Publix in Florida would have some of these delicacies. Ho fame.
Search out Catalonia’s walking photo tour of Milano on Airbnb Experiences. Here is part of her description “The Neoclassic and Art nouveau district of Porta Venezia. A residential area that represents the true everyday life of the Milanese. The brand new, sparkling and luxurious GARIBALDI’s area which is our ending point where you can easily take subway, tram, train or taxi. CUSTOM EXPERIENCE: If you would like to participate in the experience but on a different time or day, write to me and if I can I will try to organize one with your availability.”
Here is a link
I was raised to love pasta. All kinds. I have never lost my taste and when I found a email from Airbnb about a pasta making class in Milano, I jumped on it. It was a 3 hour exploration of Italian cooking and a chance to make fresh pasta. Gianfranco holds the class in his apartment and it was a very relaxing setting. This was the second of my Airbnb activities that I have engaged in and it will not be my last. Gianfrano is a “personal chef from Palermo, Sicily, and the traditional Italian and Sicilian food is my speciality. I like making genuine homemade food, pasta, street food and dessert”. He did not disappoint. Gianfranco served asiago and parmesan cheese with olives and some Italian bread while we drank some delicious white wine by Corvo. He went over the process of make the pasta and discussed the two types of meals we would eat with it.
This is an easy relaxed time with everyone taking part in the pasta making. Golden rule is 100 grams of flour and 1 egg. You want a dry dough, not sticky. When the dough is throughly mixed, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1/2 hour.
Roll it a bit to make a flat sheet and divide it into 4 pieces, Then roll it out to fit the pasta maker. Insert at the widest opening and gradually decrease the thickness till you achieve the desired thickness of your pasta. After that we hang it to dry slightly.
Here is a link to the video of my experience.
Gianfranco our host and chef.
Pasta making machine. ( available on Amzaon $26 to $200 plus)
Gianfranco with Maria and Maria who were also in the class.
Eggplant for the pasta alla Norma.
The basic pomidoro sauce for pasta alla norma.
Pasta drying before cooking.
Look for Milan activities and search for “The Secret of Italian Cuisine” under cooking classes.
My wife Angela suggested a visit to the island of Ischia, which is a short ferry ride from Napoli. At first I did not know what to think about this. Having never heard of it I began to do some research. The online photos looked good and we have always liked islands. Getting there was an adventure for us as we have to drive from Napoli to the suburb of Pozzuli. We were bring our rental car as this is a good size Island. There were no problems and a pleasant voyage with a quick stop at the island of Procida. This is also a place Iw Ould like to visit when we return to Napoli. Spend time at the beaches and enjoy the warm waters. Find a spa with hot springs feeding it. Walk or take the bus. This island is doable. Scenes from the movie, “the Talented Mr. Ripley” were filmed in Ischia. Also “While We Were Here” with Kate Bosworth. See all the films that used ischia as a location https://www.ischiareview.com/ischia-in-the-movies.html
THE ISLAND OF PROCIDA
ISCHIA MAP IN CERAMIC TILE
Once on the Island we started to explore. At on time we were on a small dirt road when it got narrower and narrower. Eventually had to back up and work our way into town,
HOT SPRING MINERAL POOL
Ischia is know for its hot spring fed mineral pools. The springs feed the pools and they are drained out each night and left to fill overnight. At least in the case of our hotel.
HOT SPRINGS FEEDING THE POOL
The Old Butcher Shop Selling Everyting
Ristorante Lo Scoglio, Sant’ Angelo d’Ischia
We headed out to dinner and found Lo Scoglio. It is located in Sant’Angelo and proved to be an excellent choice. The name translated to THE ROCK.
Photo from the restaurant web site.
View from the dining room
My wife’s choice, fruit dal mare.
Lo Scolgio in the daylight.
The teenagers had no problem diving off the rocks.
View from our hotel.
Here is the link to the Wikipedia description of Ischia. It is definitely a destination not to miss in Italy https://wikitravel.org/en/Ischia
In September I will be returning to Italy and taking a bike tour from Bolzano through Lake Garda and on to Venice. I began thinking about my cell phone. I had used all the credits and in the past had to renew through recharge my sim. de but alas they are no longer in business. So lets look at your options. TIM has a very simple plan called TIM FOR VISITORS. Google the link and click on the English Flag to change language. it is not a bad deal. For 30 Euro you get 4 GIG data, and 100 min of talk. You can purchase the voucher in the US an bring it to any TIM store. I used the one at Fiumicino, Leonardo da Vinci, Rome;s main airport. It took less than 15 minutes to get me up and running and have the attendant set up my phone. You can purchase the voucher using your US credit card.
OK, now it is time to take about recharging your card. You can go through your minutes quickly and until recently you could not recharge your sim with an foreign credit card. First go to https://www.tim.it
You will get the Italian language screen, best thing is to use Google Chrome or install the translate extension in Safari. Right click and you will get the English language translation. Keep in mind TEXT MESSAGES ARE NOT FREE. You can use iMessage or other apps that will allow you to text for free on the data. Also consider installing Skype for calls back to the US. I have had excellent results with Skype.
ITALIAN, Ricaica means recharge.
English translation. Click recharge after you use pull down to select amount.
MAKE SURE YOU CHECK THE BOX MARKED FOREIGN CREDIT CARD
At the bottom, you can select the receive email notification. It will come to your email account of choice. There os also a box to insert a TEXT which will be sent to your cell to confirm all is working.
Here is my email confirmation.
Ti confermiamo la presa in carico dell’ordine nº xxxxxxxxx del 08/04/2018 23:07:16
Numero: xxxxxxxxx Data e ora: 08/04/2018 23:07:16
Metodo di pagamento utilizzato: CDC
Costo a pagare: 10.00 Euro
Importo ricarica: 10.00 Euro
Numero ricaricato: 339xxxxxxx
N.B. La ricarica sara’ immediatamente resa disponibile come credito telefonico e comunque non oltre le 48 ore dal momento della richiesta.
Ti ricordiamo che sul sito tim.it puoi attivare altre offerte o servizi, acquistare prodotti e Ricaricare. Inoltre, accedendo alla sezione MyTIM Mobile del sito potrai:
verificare il tuo credito residuo
verificare lo stato delle offerte attive sulla tua linea
modificare il tuo profilo tariffario
consultare lo stato dei tuoi acquisti online
There are other options, Vodafone has a similar plan. Google Vodafone Holiday for information.
Keep in mind none of the plans have everything you may need. You need an unlocked cell phone with GSM capabilities. You will always need your passport when purchasing from a Tim or Vodafone store.
We strayed from our Campo dei Fiore market to seek out the Testaccio Market. It has moved from a covered stall environment to a new modern clean building. It proved to be a great day trip. Google maps gave us the correct bus line to make and after that is was a short walk.
This is a large comfortable space with many vendors, both food and clothing. We enjoyed looking and eating at the market.
Fresh seafood is abundant.
Fresh vegetables with very affordable prices.
My favorite porchetta! Delicious.
Tripe is a favorite of many people, ma non io.
Bring your own bottle, look at the prices. 2.40 E for a liter.
Arancini or supple are a favorite of mine.
We enjoyed lunch from this stall
It was a great lunch.
Clothing is also sold.
The market is well worth the visit. Lots has been written about it and there are no exaggerations. Enjoy the many markets of Rome. I am back in Florida and our weekend markets do not come close to the Rome markets.
Knowing that we would most likely be in an August heat wave, we have tried to stay close to the water.
Access to the beach is free, but if you wish the comforts on a lounge chair, and umbrella you must pay. In this case it was 25 euro for the day, and well worth it. Today we will bring an umbrella from our apartment and give it a try on the cheap side. Means no fresh water shower and sitting on the rocky shore on a borrowed towel. We will see. The water is so clear you can see the bottom in 6 ft depths. Fish swim by and not plastic or pollution is in evidence. A note about the beach lounge chairs. They are far superior to the ones found in the US. If you wish to lean back, there is a line with a hook that releases the chair to find a comfortable position. What I really like is the folding sun screen to keep the sun our of your face. Wish they were available in Florida.
Some scenes from last night as the sun set.
Below shows where we are in relation to the town of Siracusa in Sicily.