Friday, March 17, 2017

Lucca - Towers & Museum

Yesterday I forgot to mention that Wendy had a visitor ring the doorbell. The priest was ringing all the bells to go and bless the parishioners. Now we have had visits from the police, and the priest, we should be covered.

Last full walk on the wall this morning. It is starting to hit us that this fun visit to Lucca is coming to an end. We talked a lot about how much we did enjoy Lucca and how we may come back some day. It would be a great place when mobility becomes an issue as the town itself is very flat as compared to some of the others we have visited. We did get off the wall about 1/2 way around to look for some special Easter rice donut treats. We looked if a few bakeries but they didn't have any, but then at the bakery where Stephanie and Paul told us they got them we were told that they would be ready at 10:30. Now I now where I will be off to later this morning.

Back to the apartment for a couple of hours and I head out in search of donuts. I arrive back and they are still warm, and the bag is saturated in oil, you know they are good. Kind of like timbits, we had actually bought them earlier in the trip as well.

Lunch time and Wendy and I go to climb the Guinigi Tower, this is the tower with the trees on top. We had planned on doing this the entire trip, but left it for when Marc and Mary-Sue were here, then never got around to doing it. Arrived at the ticket window and the clock tower is also open again for climbing and you can climb both in the same day. Off we go, 2 towers again. Beautiful views of the city from the top, only about 200 stairs each, so not as bad as Pisa and Florence. We're not sure when the clock tower opened again, it was closed for repairs when we first got here. We walk by the ticket window just about every day, but this is the first day we noticed it open, we may have just missed it.

Wendy went back to the apartment to finish her workday and I went off to do more exploring. Sonia the property manager arrived back at the apartment to settle up what we owed for heat, heat was not included in the rent. We had give her a 300.00 Euro security deposit, but she forgot to bring that with her so we offered to walk back to her office later to finish up those details and get some money back.

I stayed out because there were a couple of places I still wanted to visit. Stopped at a small deli for lunch where I had a sandwich and a glass of wine for 5 Euro. Lucky for me there was a gelato place across from it where I had one scoop Pistachio and one scoop of Peanut.

My first stop was to find the house where Puccini was born. No problem finding it. We had been at this piazza before and had actually seen his statue but had not notice the house which is also a museum. 9 Euro to go visit, so I skip that as that is like 4 gelato.

Why can we can this in Canada at this price

My second stop was at a church where you could also go under the church where they had excavated. There are things going back to 1 century BC. One cool thing was a wall that had graffiti from the 1200. I guess this is not a new thing. The other thing was there were part of mosaic floor still there. The church was pretty as well and quite large as well. The bonus part is the ticket gives you access to the bell tower which I gladly climb up. This is where they have the Puccini concert when it is busier. Best deal in town for 3 Euro.

From the Roman times

Graffiti from the 1200s

My last stop is to visit the Cathedral. I buy the combo ticket which covers the Cathedral, the museum and of course the tower. The museum is not too large but has a bit of everything in it. I am sure it does not compare to Rome. The church is very pretty and quite large. Mt legs are now dead but I still have to climb over 200 steps to the top of the tower. This is nice as you are very close to the wall and can see it very clearly. They have a long rope to ring the bell from the bottom. Was almost tempted to jump the rope for the way down to give my legs a break but no. From there I headed back to the apartment and got a 30 minute rest before moving on again.

You can see the wall we walked on everyday

Crooked stairs

We had arranged to meet Stephanie and Paul at a Church that we originally thought were having another concert. I stopped by earlier in the day and I'm pretty sure it is the stations of the cross in Italian. We still head there at 5 since we have arranged a time to meet. Stephanie and Paul are already inside, they realize it is not the concert, and as soon as they see us peek in they make a quick exit. Stephanie and Paul decide to come and see Sonia with is, they are also renting from her. So off we go to the office and get that sorted. On the way to see Sonia we stopped at a wine store to see the wine cellar, they have over 50,000 bottles of wine and do wine tasting.  New plans are we go to the St. Michel Piazza and have a glass of wine, this is the first time we have done this, they served us some little tapas as well. It is cooler out tonight, a bit windy all day. Stephanie and Paul head home and we go in search of somewhere for supper. We don't have reservations and we know Friday nights are busy and we lucked out at getting in at Gigi, a restaurant Sonia had recommended, but they told us we would have to eat outside under the heat lamps.

We had some time before our dinner reservation so went home to do a bit more packing. We opened some cupboards and realized we still had some food from there as well as the fridge that we could pass on to Stephanie and Paul as they are here another 2 months. Quick email to let them know we are coming over on the way to the restaurant. They must think they will never be rid of us!

Dinner tonight was fabulous. If you are still reading and haven't been Stephanie do try it. We started by sharing this zucchini pudding thing with cheese sauce that was absolutely amazing. I had polenta topped with beef stew, and I had gnocchi. They advertise that everything is made from scratch, this is the first restaurant we have been served warm bread, yummy. The gnocchi was so rich that Wendy and I switched plates part way through, a very good dinner at extremely reasonable prices.
Beef stew on Polenta, Delicious

Back to the apartment, we did stop at the Church first to see if there was a concert a 9 as I was not 100% sure of the Italian translation that I got earlier, no concert going on so it is off to the apartment. Finished up some last minute packing, one game of crib which Wendy won, I just made it past the skunk line by 1!

Tomorrow we are off to Venice, so looking forward to that. Probably won't get daily reports done, but we will be vigilant with taking notes and taking pictures of course to try to remember everything! We will miss Lucca, it has been a perfect spot for us to explore this part of the country and still come “home” during the week.

1 comment:

  1. Greatt pictures André. Lucca sounds amazing. Might have to get there some day.


We appreciate any comments/questions you would have or any stories about the places we visited.