Monday, September 28, 2015

Tuscany reboot September 2015

So here we go. We planned a short trip up to Sienna to kind of break the seal of getting out and about in Italy. It started early on Saturday morning by getting the boys to their flag football game. They actually seemed to have a good time. Colby played great and Jo is coming around. Grandpa would be so proud to see them. Carney park is actually beautiful and I think we'll have a lot of fun with this over the years.

So after of course heading back to the base to pick up a couple of things (we always have something, this time it was Colby's shoes). It really hits home how crappy Crapoli is when just 30 minutes north of the city things start to get a lot better. First stop was Orvieto. 
 Front gate of Orvieto. We parked at the top of the funicular.
 Walking down some awesome Tuscan streets.
 Everyone is having a great time, especially Hollywood. Can you pick him out?
 Do you think that car can handle these two?

Ah, Italy.
Next we took everyone up the Torre de Morro. An old watchtower that overlooks the city. Used in medieval times for security, now to give tourists exercise. 

 Looks daunting. There was an elevator which cut about 50 steps. Mommy did her exercise and skipped the elevator!
 Somebody is tired out at the clock.
 Ah, Italy!
 Boys on adventure.
Family time, we're finally out and on our way!

 Next on to the Duomo. Very nice gothic exterior with white and black marble. Interior the same.

 Stopped on a street that we'll have to come back to. Wizard of Oz toy store with lots of interesting stuff. We only gave the kids a few minutes because we knew that it would be hours in there. We'll come back.
Looks like someone found a friend. 
From Orvieto we headed north to our room close to Sienna. The resort was called Linari. It's a converted monestary run by a gay couple that bought it 25 years ago and have worked on it since then. The pictures give it the best story. 
 Entrance of the monestary.
 Beautiful view overlooking the Tuscan valleys.

 Entrance to our rooms.

 James pondering his fate.
 Ah Italy!
 Poops adventuring.

 Courtyard of the monastery.

 Driveway leading to the couple's house. They live on site.
 Pool witch is probably awesome in the summer - on morning we had breakfast out here.
The A team!

Next off to dinner in the local village of San Rocco at a restaurant recommended by our guys at the property. They gave us a great tip and the pizzas and calzones were awesome. I think we're going to do great here in Italy. 
 Poopsie loves his pizza!! Check out Cyd's sea food pasta! She said it was the best that she's had in Italy yet!!

After a "quiet" night. We had a nice breakfast by the pool and were ready for a new day. We headed off to Vinci, birthplace of Leonardo. It was a nice little village with a small museum and exhibits dedicated to the late genius. Some great science stuff for the boys. 

 Models of Leonardo's inventions. A big hit with the boys. Signs everywhere saying "do not touch", well you know that didn't hold with our guys.

 Jo wants to fly away.

 View from atop the tower in the village.
 The following are shots of the "perfect man" exhibit from Leonardo's famous sketches. Who fits it best?

The Original.

 Poops goes face to face with street sculpture.

 Lunch at a local taverna. Not the best, but the atmosphere was great.

And of course have to finish off with Gelato. It started to get a little warm in the afternoon and the boys were dying to get into the pool back at the resort. We tried to tell them how cold it was, but you can't keep them from the water. 

 Notice Cyd's foot and of course Capochinco - keeps the mommy going.
After a nice "refreshing" cold dip in the pool. We headed out to Sienna in the evening to check it out. It's a really beautiful town with a colorful history. Maybe not as fancy as Florence, but definitely it's own distinct style. 

 The city is divided up into 9 Contrada - basically neighborhood associations that have their own histories, mascots and flags - poops loved the flags
 The world from a different perspective.

 Some more tired than others.
 Poops telling me what he really thinks about all this touring.
 Sienna, steps everywhere!!!
 Incredible towers.
 And I think Jo really could take this pizza on.
 Piazza del Campo.

We picked up a Pinnochio along the way - playing with Scoops before hitting the hay after a long night.  Another wonderful breakfast at the place, packed up to go, and then it was time to head out. We decided to make a quick stop in Montepulciano so Cyd could get some "Twilight" shots. Again, very cute little town with awesome scenery driving it. We'll have to spend some more time in this region of Tuscany!!
 Ping pong at the palace.

 Church of the "Twilight"

 Ah, Italy!

What a great first trip. Can't wait to get out more. Tuscany is awesome!