Saturday, June 29, 2013

A down day

We were in need of a down day after the craziness of the Cinque Terre, so we decided to stick around our little village of Carro and visit another nearby village. The other village was called Varese Ligure and had an old, old castle in the center of the city. You can't go into it because it's actually privately owned (it was a residence once upon a time, which seems crazy big). There were some shops in Varese Ligure, including a bakery that filled us up with a whole bag of cookies for about one euro.

We walked around the village and really that was about it. There was a pretty little stream running through the town with this old stone bridge.

The bridge at Varese Ligure

I thought this wrought iron and flower boxes were so pretty on this yellow house

Oh, the Italians are not afraid of color! (Varese Ligure)

We tried to find somewhere to eat around 1 o'clock, and nothing was open. Seriously. We drove and drove up windy, narrow mountainous roads looking for a specific restaurant (which didn't open until 2:30, really?) and then we stopped in Sesta Godona at the restaurant attached to the gelateria where we had already stopped several times and they weren't open. Finally, after a lot of driving around, we stopped at the supermarcato (supermarket) and bought some pesto and pasta to take home and make ourselves.

We lazed around our little house a while and decided to do a load of laundry. Oh my gosh--the washer wouldn't ring out our clothes and we left them out to drive for the next three (I'm not kidding) days and they still never fully dried. I love Europe, but I don't know if I could live there without a proper laundry room.

We decided to go walking in the nature trails in Carro later in the afternoon. We found the sweetest teeny little ripe red strawberries on the trail. We ate them as we walked. The girls kept spotting lizards along the way as well.

Here's the view of Carro from where we were hiking.

We decided to eat at the Pizzeria in Carro for dinner (which did not open until 7pm). Italian restaurants in the villages keep the oddest hours. I had the white pizza and it was absolutely amazing! 

After dinner, we visited the Carro church whose bells pealed every hour, even long into the night. It is such a beautiful church!

Speaking of church, one of the things you see a lot on the outsides of Italian homes are these little Catholic shrines with statues of Mary. We saw a lot of them (you can see them beside doors in some of my door pictures) but this was probably the most unusual one I saw our whole time in Italy. I'm pretty sure it's made out of seashells--very beautiful!

After our walk back through Carro (wishing all the villagers sitting outside their doors a buonasera), we called it a night, played a little Kings on the Corner with mom and the girls, and got to bed early. Everywhere we went, Portia found Italian cats to chase through the streets.


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