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I'm taking off for Italy and Paris!

 
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2005 5:44 pm    Post subject: I'm taking off for Italy and Paris! Reply with quote

At the end of the month, my 18 months of planning this trip to Italy and Paris will finally come to fruition! We're flying into Milan, then moving onto Venice, then spending a week in Tuscany with Arrezo as our home base, and then Rome, and then Paris. We'll be away for about 3 1/2 weeks.

In Tuscany, we will be renting a car and staying in a farmhouse converted into apartments. Here is the web site of our place:

http://www.foresteria.it/eng/index.html

I haven't done much research into Tuscany. Can anyone on the boards offer advice on scenic small towns and tasty regional specialties? I've never driven in Italy either. I heard the roads of Tuscany are insane. Is that true?

Also, if you have any restaurant suggestions for Milan, Venice and Rome, I'll take those too. I'm so excited! Very Happy
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2005 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My mom spent a few weeks in Tuscany last October and drove a lot. She didn't have trouble with the roads or other cars just motorcycles. From what she said they are pretty daring over there and she actually hit one, so keep your eyes peeled for motorcycle riders.

There is a wonderful Tuscan cooking class offered at a local restaurant, I forget the name though. The website is seamuschef.com.
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2005 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Erin,

I'm dying of suspense! What happened when your mom hit the motorcycle in Tuscany?!!
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2005 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It turned out to be kind of a funny story, thank goodness. The man had cut across the road from a side street just as my mom changed lanes into where he was heading. She got out and was freaking out thinking she had killed him, when he popped up and began to flirt! No matter what she said he refused to go to the hospital. She insisted on following him to his sisters garden shop nearby where they could exchange info and it culminated in him offering his villa for our family to stay at sometime. It took her a few days to work up the nerve to get back behind the wheel, but it was an Alpha Romao convertable, (her favorite car), so I am not surprised it didn't take long.
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2005 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What an amazing story!!! Only in Tuscany will accident victims use an accident as an opportune time to flirt!
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Chicago Bear



Joined: 02 May 2005
Posts: 240
Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2005 11:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We rented a small villa near Reggello, just outside Florence, for two weeks. It was one of the best vacations we ever had, because we took short day trips, and then came back to sleep in the same bed every night. The driving was easy, except for the time that I saw someone hit a woman on a bicycle. The woman did not get up to flirt. Of all our day trips, we liked Greve and San Gimingano the best. Don't worry about restaurant recommendations. Just find a place that looks right for you, depending on your mood at the moment. Of course, our mood improved dramatically after we had two bottles of white wine for lunch in San Gimingano. We weren't up to driving for a long time after that.
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foodiedesigner



Joined: 20 Sep 2005
Posts: 1
Location: austin, texas

PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2005 3:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently returned from a wonderful study abroad program in italy- 2 months in milan-what could be better!

In Milan, I would recommend going to Peck, this wonderful food emporium place and picking up goodies there (great wine selection). The restaurant cracco-peck is also wonderful, though pricey.
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Madame M.



Joined: 17 Dec 2004
Posts: 34
Location: Memphis, Tennessee, USA

PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2005 4:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Harpospeaking, I am insanely jealous Mr. Green of your trip. And the villa looks fab.

For information about small towns, restaurants, etc., try www.slowtrav.com/ , a site dedicated to folks who don't just buzz through towns or areas and hit the tourist sites and eat at places recommended in guide books. It is particularly good for Italy. Browse and if you don't find the info you want, post a request and you will be pleased at the responses.

Have a wonderful time!
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2005 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the travel link, Madame M! Just looking at the sample menus for Italy are making my mouth water! I'm counting down the days . . . 6 more days to go! It will be my first trip to Italy and my third trip to Paris. Very Happy
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simona



Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 696
Location: israel

PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2005 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="harpospeaking"]What an amazing story!!! Only in Tuscany will accident victims use an accident as an opportune time to flirt![/quote]

Dear Harpo, the truth is that only Italian men ( in Tuscany and all over Italy) , will use any occasion, including an accident , as an opportunity to flirt. They are Italian men, aren't they!

No more war, more italian men intensively flirting!
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Madame M,

Thanks for the link to www.slovtrav.com. I printed out a trip description from a Canadian couple who documented a trip to Italy and Paris with an itinerary that is almost identical to mine! What luck! Very Happy
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Madame M.



Joined: 17 Dec 2004
Posts: 34
Location: Memphis, Tennessee, USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2005 1:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Harpospeaking, I am SO glad that worked for you. On my last trip to Italy I got lots of good tips and even made e-mail contact with some folks that I still keep contact with.

We all can't wait to hear about your trip when you get back! Have a marvy time....

Alyce
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