Rome to Assisi 11-29-08 thru 12-02-08

When we got up we took a walk with Dad around the block to see Colonial Square. We were looking for a cannoli and licorice while Dad was here but we couldnít find any. The hotel had arranged a shuttle to the airport for us. It was the same lady driver that had gotten us out of our mess of traffic after our cruise. She doesnít speak a word of English but she always gets us to where we need to be and on time. We went into the airport with Dad and it was confusing as always trying to find his check-in point. After several tries, we did find the first class check in lounge, but it was sure difficult to see. We had to leave him at the security gate, but he had agreed to call us once he was in his seat on the plane. That made us feel much better. We caught a taxi back to our hotel, and decided it was time to take care of getting our laundry done. On the way we found a place to get cannoliís so Tony bought two, one for him and one for Dad. Sadly he had to eat Dadís too! Ha

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After getting back to the hotel after getting all of our laundry done, we decided it was time to go out for dinner. We had heard from Dad that he was on the plane and we saw on the computer that his plane had taken off. We went just down the street for dinner and Tony had spaghetti and meatballs and I had what looked like enchiladas but was noodles with a red meat sauce.

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We decided to stay one more day in Rome and go shopping on Sunday. We had blue skies and warmer weather than when Dad was here. I even took off my coat at one point! After a full day of shopping and after over 30 days of eating some very rich food every night I needed a break from anything with a red sauce! Ha So we went to McDonalds!!! We never eat at McDonalds at home, but the Big Mac and Fries tasted pretty good. Also we were the only non Italians in there, so we were eating where the locals eat. Ha

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12-01-08

We decided to go to Assisi, so we checked out of our hotel and headed to the train station. On the way from Rome to Assisi it was raining. We saw some beautiful views anyway. The pictures below are of hill towns that we passed and a big rainbow.

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When we arrived in Assisi, we didnít have any reservations for a hotel. We had looked at a couple of hotels on the internet that were inside the old city walls up on the hill. When we asked the taxi driver which was best of the two he said the Hotel Berti. Here are some pictures along the way to the top of the hill and our Hotel Berti.

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The hotel was old and on the side of a hill, when we went in the owner Berti met us at the door and took us to our room, unlocked the door and showed us how to turn on the lights and to get CNN on the TV! Ha I think we were the only ones at this hotel. After we unloaded our luggage we headed off to St. Frances basilica. It was up a huge hill and it started to rain once we were on top. We went through and saw the tomb of St. Frances of Assisi. This is the starting place of the Franciscan Monks. We hired a taxi to take us around the rest of the town because it was raining so hard and every way you turned it was all uphill!

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Below are some of the pictures that we took as our taxi driver stopped at some points of interest. We wished it hadnít been raining so hard because it was beautiful and the vistas were unbelievable.

The castle on the very top of the hill was called Rocca Maggiore and the other picture is of the American Sisters Franciscan Order.

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We went back to the hotel and asked Berti about dinner, he didnít speak any English but we could tell that he meant for us to come back down when we were ready to eat. When we did, he got one of his daughters to walk us across the street to their restaurant. She unlocked the door and turned on the lights and brought us menus. We were the only ones in the place so that was kind of fun. It was a really cool place, with arched brick ceilings and a lot of character. Below are pictures of the restaurant.

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Below is pictures of our meal. We forgot to take a picture of the anti-pasta plate until after it was half gone! Hungry I guess. I had gnocchi with walnuts shaved on top, and Tony had porcini stuffed ravioli, then I had sausages and Tony had Wild Boar Stew. After he had Panacotta for dessert. It was like a flan with caramel and chocolate topping. Everything was fantastico!

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When we got up this morning there was a table set for two in the breakfast area, and Berti was waiting on us. He made Tony a cappuccino and I had a yogurt and croissant. When we checked out Berti called us a taxi to take us back to the train station. Our driver, the same one we had yesterday stopped and let Tony take pictures as we looked back at where we had been.

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We also stopped at a church by the train station that was called Basilica of S. Maria Degli Angeli. It was a beautiful church with the ceilings all in frescos.

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It was a great stay that was quiet and restful after leaving the busy city of Rome. When we were leaving the hotel this morning we saw a picture on the wall that looked like the same hotel we were at, but it was black and white and very old. We asked Berti as best we could, when this picture was taken. He wrote down 1900. He said that it was the building as the hotel now. The other picture is of Berti in the doorway offering us an umbrella.

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We got on a train headed for Bologna. We had to change trains in Florence and arrived in Bologna about 4:00pm. We are going out to dinner later and will let you know how that was tomorrow.

See you in MilanÖ

Tony & Candy