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Old 02-12-2012, 12:52 PM   #136
MinnieDiva
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BTW: if you go over to the July 13 Med thread check out post 1. A talented person over on the creative design thread named Dom13 made a super cool itinerary design for us. It could be easily modified by him for your trip as all he would need to do is change the July date to June (since we're headed to the same ports!). I'm sure he won't mind if you ask him nicely!

Beth
WOW!! That is awesome! Thanks for the info and offer to "pirate" your design! I'm looking for him now...
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:58 PM   #137
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No problem Beth...I'm actually getting more excited for this trip by reading what Kim's written and adding my stuff. I think she knew that would get me, that's why she started this
Mwahahahaha! You've figured me out!
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Old 02-12-2012, 01:06 PM   #138
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Following along and it is bringing back memories of our Med cruise in 2007. I'm gonna have a hard time deciding what to do again and what to try new for our 2013 cruise... Also, I took the exact same pictures... Isn't that weird...
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Old 02-12-2012, 01:20 PM   #139
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Ahhhhh....Sorrento!

So as I mentioned, we left the port and drove down the coast to Sorrento:



Talk about awe-inspiring views! You think iconic views of italy? This is pretty high on my list!

Our tour guide took us around the town, showing us some of the Roman remains:




Those were the old city walls and arches that were the entrances to the city. We went to a local wood-inlay business where we got to look at incredible furniture at some really expensive prices, and were able to have a small snack there as well. We had some time to wander the town and do any shopping we cared to. I was more entranced by the architecture:

The town square:



A church:




Market goods:




At some point, we ran into Mindelmouse and family. The other two families, Cliffside and Jel0511, were on this tour with us, so the kids had built in entertainment. We met at our assigned time on a street corner with the tour guide and waited for the bus to come for us. We were off to see a local farm!



This place was like no farm I've ever seen. It was hilly, for one, and there was no "field", per se, to be seen. They grew olives, lemons, limes, and somewhere or another had cows stashed to give milk to make their cheese:






We got to have lunch at this farm. Here was our antipasto plate:



and sitting on the table:



YUM! I guess I didn't take any pictures of the pasta, but needless to say it was the best I've ever eaten!! (until the next day when had pasta again....)The cheese in the antipasto platter was the cheese they made at the farm, by the way...They also made their own lemon cello here. They actually made 2 kinds, regular and lemon cello cream. Both were fantastic! We bought a bottle of each, but sadly, the cream one leaked around the cork and spoiled on the flight home . (it was wrapped and in a ziplock, thankfully)

This was a very memorable port for us. It's kind of sad we're not repeating it this go-around, but it is what it is. I'd love to be able to travel here not on a cruise and just hop from town to town and savor them slowly. And eat my way from one end to another. I do need to hunt out lemon cello this next visit...I bet I can find some in La Spezia...
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Old 02-12-2012, 01:21 PM   #140
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Following along and it is bringing back memories of our Med cruise in 2007. I'm gonna have a hard time deciding what to do again and what to try new for our 2013 cruise... Also, I took the exact same pictures... Isn't that weird...
Not weird at all! I think I've figured out how to do something new everywhere but Rome. Rome, I think, is worth doing all over again!
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Old 02-12-2012, 03:04 PM   #141
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I'd love to be able to travel here not on a cruise and just hop from town to town and savor them slowly. And eat my way from one end to another. ...
Hmmm....my thoughts exactly....I wonder if you know anyone who you can convince to do that with you????
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:43 PM   #142
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If you can gold pan elsewhere, do so. Wasn't worth it...
We did gold panning through DCL in Juneau. We loved it. It was in a river underneath a hill where gold really has been found. Theory is if the gold is in the hill, it might be in the river....Not too sure about that but there were locals there panning away as well. It seemed more low key and a bit less touristy than Liarsville. My kids loved it (but the sunshine, warm weather and wading in the river might have had something to do with that)

We are on the June 15th Med cruise as well. Thank you so much for the pre-cruise report - I wasn't on one of the earlier cruises (Alaska was our first cruise ever) so it is wonderful to be able to read about some of the places we will be going to!

Sophia
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:54 PM   #143
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We did gold panning through DCL in Juneau. We loved it. It was in a river underneath a hill where gold really has been found. Theory is if the gold is in the hill, it might be in the river....Not too sure about that but there were locals there panning away as well. It seemed more low key and a bit less touristy than Liarsville. My kids loved it (but the sunshine, warm weather and wading in the river might have had something to do with that)

We are on the June 15th Med cruise as well. Thank you so much for the pre-cruise report - I wasn't on one of the earlier cruises (Alaska was our first cruise ever) so it is wonderful to be able to read about some of the places we will be going to!

Sophia
Glad you had a good time panning. In Skagway, it was really cold, and we weren't at a river...we were at stands where they'd dump in rock for us to sift thru. It didn't help that we were STARVING! It would have been nice had they'd stated that pre-packaged food would have been ok, but nooooooooo.....

The historical part was interesting, but only 4 of us lasted long enough to get to it.

Glad you're finding my chatterings interesting! I can't bug my friends here locally too much; they just don't understand my obsessions. I'm enjoying this outlet for my thoughts!!
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:24 PM   #144
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Glad you're finding my chatterings interesting! I can't bug my friends here locally too much; they just don't understand my obsessions. I'm enjoying this outlet for my thoughts!!
My DH just doesn't understand. He'll get interested the day before we leave and then wonder why everything is planned without his input Hey, at least he agrees with most of my choices once we get there!
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:07 PM   #145
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My DH just doesn't understand. He'll get interested the day before we leave and then wonder why everything is planned without his input Hey, at least he agrees with most of my choices once we get there!
You're DH seems a lot like I was...I think that's why kim starting writing the pretrip to get me more interested now...so I'll discuss and take seriously excursion and hotel decisions...

I think it's working..she is getting me more excited about it...only problem is I have to get through the other things in my life happening before that...like, where will I be living when I go on this trip and I also have 2 cruises prior right now..maybe only one.
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Old 02-12-2012, 09:51 PM   #146
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My DH just doesn't understand. He'll get interested the day before we leave and then wonder why everything is planned without his input Hey, at least he agrees with most of my choices once we get there!
Last time, Sean wasn't really into it either. At least not until the last few months, when we had to decide on excursions. His only request was Cinque Terre, other than that, I really think I could have booked anything and he'd have been happy. He's much more in to the planning process this time around. I really want to make sure my dad enjoys himself this go-around. I know we will, but I want to have him see as much as possible without wearing him out too much .
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Old 02-13-2012, 04:12 PM   #147
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My creativity gene was stymied yesterday. BOTH of sewing machines are broken, my old faithful and the newer-ish one I inherited recently. Very frustrating, so today I ended up taking them in to get fixed. So why am I boring you with this minutiae? I'm getting to the point, I swear!

In the meantime, I worked out as a way to de-stress (it's very traumatizing to have my creative outlook put on indefinite hold!) then went to retrieve the husband from what ever he was doing, and found him replacing caulking in one of the bathrooms while listening to Rick Steves' app on his iPhone! I found this rather ironic as that was what I was planning on listening to on the drive into town!! So yes, I'm referencing Rick Steves AGAIN. Probably going to keep doing it, too. This app allows you to download small portions from his radio show so as to learn about whatever topic you find amusing. After listening to 2 different Spain topics, we switched to one from Provence. Sigh. I felt myself relaxing.....

So now that there is a solution in the works to my sewing fiasco, I can refocus my energies to travel!! Hmmmmmm.....what to ponder next? Any suggestions??
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Old 02-13-2012, 10:37 PM   #148
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My poor family....

So tonight was our first foray into our Instant Immersion Spanish language program. I announced that it might be a nice idea to do this after dinner, and after DH stammered out a few unintelligible syllables and couldn't think of a reason why not to, and DD's eye rolling and huffing of breath, we all congregated around the computer. I broke out flashcards and handed out pens. DD still with rolling eyes whined that her pen wasn't working, so after a replacement, we got started with some basic vocabulary. DD actually really started to get into it! We tried to guess what the word might be before we had the people on the program tell us. Some of it was new to us, but a lot was familiar. We now have a working knowledge of how to ask where our suitcases are: Donde estan las malletas? I can actually see up using that phrase!

If that wasn't enough, I then broke out the DVD from the Naples book I posted pics of yesterday and we began to watch that. It was interesting, but not a very professional video. Not quite done with it yet, but as DD has a cold and fell asleep on my lap, we decided that maybe that was enough for today.

Tomorrow is a quick day trip to Vancouver for some tubing, and I can see some audio instruction in spanish happening in the car.....mwahahahahaha!!!
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:25 AM   #149
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Originally Posted by MinnieDiva View Post
So tonight was our first foray into our Instant Immersion Spanish language program. I announced that it might be a nice idea to do this after dinner, and after DH stammered out a few unintelligible syllables and couldn't think of a reason why not to, and DD's eye rolling and huffing of breath, we all congregated around the computer. I broke out flashcards and handed out pens. DD still with rolling eyes whined that her pen wasn't working, so after a replacement, we got started with some basic vocabulary. DD actually really started to get into it! We tried to guess what the word might be before we had the people on the program tell us. Some of it was new to us, but a lot was familiar. We now have a working knowledge of how to ask where our suitcases are: Donde estan las malletas? I can actually see up using that phrase!

If that wasn't enough, I then broke out the DVD from the Naples book I posted pics of yesterday and we began to watch that. It was interesting, but not a very professional video. Not quite done with it yet, but as DD has a cold and fell asleep on my lap, we decided that maybe that was enough for today.

Tomorrow is a quick day trip to Vancouver for some tubing, and I can see some audio instruction in spanish happening in the car.....mwahahahahaha!!!
You are too much

I was wondering why the thread title changed...confused me a bit

I can just picture Sean giving his "all" with the Spanish course and I'm literally rolling with laughter...I could have taught you how to say that...my spanish is rudimentary but probably enough to get by...however, from the 10 weeks my kids are getting of Italian in school...they are picking up an awful lot...so perhaps we'll have some Italian translators for Italy.
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:46 PM   #150
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So with Kim off tubing in Vancouver and learning Spanish in the car (yes she is really doing both of those, I talked with her this morning) and me feeling creative, I've decided to hijack her pretrip report and keep it moving in her absence, since I was with her the whole evening after Sorrento, as well as the next day. Since I wrote a personal, never published, trip report, I am going to paraphrase from that. So the next morning, we arrived bright and early in Civitavecchia.
The view coming into port from our room.


Today we would be on a tour arranged by Kim with Limo in Rome to see the city of Rome. This was a group that Kim put together with friends from the Disboard, included were the aforementioned Jel0511 and Cliffside. While this tour included all the highlights of the city, there was one very important fact that we learned (PAY ATTENTION - you're going to want to know this) When you hire these tour companies, for most of the tour, all you are getting is a driver, who is only expected to drive you to each place, not to give you a tour. Sometime you get lucky and get a talkative one, but don't count on it, because apparently in Italy, one must have a license to be a tour guide. So you may want to think about paying the extra money and getting a tour guide as well - we missed having one.
The ride from the port to Rome was about an hour. Our driver dropped us off at the Palatine and suggested we buy our tickets there which would include admission to the Coliseum. By walking through the Palatine, the paths lead you right there.

Some of the amazing sights of the Palatine:






Then onto the Coliseum:




After the Coliseum, we went to the Trevi Fountain



Of course we all tossed our coins and look we'll be going back in less than 3 years.

Our drivers than dropped us off at a small restaurant for lunch. We had some of the most amazing pasta ever. I ordered the carbonara and the waiter was very excited that someone ordered it. I think if I would have let him, Sean might have eaten it all

continued in next post
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