Fish Catching Travel
I can’t wait to get back on the water!
After around 7,000 miles and 20 hours we are finally back from Italy. It is 4 in the morning and of course since I am turned around and on Italy time I am wide awake. We left for the airport in Rome at 8 in the morning and got home at 10 the same night. Coming this way we were chasing the sun and it stayed daylight forever, suffice to say it will take a couple of days to get turned back around.
This is a fishing site, but I will take today to fill you in on some of the trip, then it is back to fishing. Not having a rod and reel in my hand for a couple of weeks I am itching to get back on the water.
Not really sure how I am going to structure this, but suffice to say Italy was something. We started off in Rome for a few days, then it was off to Siena, then Monterossa and the 5 towns of the Cinque Terra, and back to Rome for a night to come back. So this is no travelogue, just a couple of things I liked the most.
Romulus and Remus. Lupe the wolf raised them and then Romulus killed Remus and Rome was born.
While Rome was cool, it is like any big city we have been to, New York, Istanbul, or Athens. We walked our butt off and did a few touristy things, my favorite was the Colosseum.
What a cool place.
The things you see in the floor is the underground area where the animals and gladiators were kept. It was not accessible except by the underground passage to keep both from escaping. The interior walls had elevators that were used to raise them to the floor for combat. While the movie Gladiator was fairly accurate in some respects, the gladiators did not fight the animals, they were actually starved for a few days then released on each other. Then to finish them off hunters were raised in to kill them. In one set of games that lasted a 100 days over 5000 animals were killed, including lions, tigers, hippos, and hosts of others.
Then the gladiators were raised to the floor so the over 50,000 spectators could go nuts. The Emperor decided who lived and died, but due to the cost of feeding and training them there were not that many killed. It was a great show, and they were performers, so it was a little hacking and whacking and then called it a day. Basically the games were held whenever the Emperor was needing a little PR. If memory serves me right this went on for a few hundred years. And boy do the Italians love their statues, arches, and monuments and there are way to many to even see.
Of course we visited other places but Italy is all about one big thing, eat until you drop. And we did our share.
We might have consumed a couple of adult beverages while we were there. I am not a big wine guy but the Chianti was fantastic.
The pasta on the right was my best food choice of the whole trip. We got lucky and somehow got in without a reservation in one of the new hot spots in Rome. A small place run by 2 women the food was so good. The owner waited on us and I said feed me what you would eat. It was simple hand made pasta in olive oil and garlic, and folks it was not Chef Boy-R-Dee. Simply one of the best things I have ever eaten. How in the world they eat 5 courses at most meals is beyond me, but suffice to say the Italians are all about eating.
Next it was off to Siena, a very cool town in the mountains in the north of Italy in the Tuscany region. The old city is walled and only taxis and scooters are allowed, otherwise it is a warren of streets, home to the Paloi, a horse race going back around 600 years. What a cool place.
The view from our hotel, and one of the biggest streets.
It was colder than we thought, so the boss even bought a coat, along with a few other things, shall we say. And of course it was another eating extravaganza.
A little Chianti, fresh bread, olives, and sheep cheese, on the towns square from the butcher shop. Totally cool.
The 700 year old church, museum, and crypt. The pictures do not do it justice.
My favorite restaurant of the trip. Built in 1100 it was stable and for $30 it was a meal that left us fat and happy.
I really enjoyed Siena. It was what I expected from the trip but after 3 days it was off to Monterossa and the Five Towns.
On the northern coast of Italy it is 5 small towns built right on the coast and is one cool place. It rained 2 of the 3 days but that did not stop us. The whole dang place is up hill and we walked and walked. It is one place I am glad I have seen before I am to old because it is all straight up.
Trolling for anchovies and fixing the nets.
Known for it fishing, they have their anchovies. But there are tuna, marlin, bottom fish, lobster, prawns, and it was all delicious. We love anchovies and ate them fried, stuffed, in lemon, in olive oil, and several other ways I don’t remember.
My lovely wife and a German bunker from WWII overlooking the coast.
My favorite building of the trip. The Oratory of the Dead, a Catholic fraternity , it was dedicated to helping widows and orphans and shipwreck victims.
Walked until we dropped and also took a boat ride down the coast to get to the other towns.
It was all uphill. Entering the Valley of the Lemons, and they were not kidding, they are the size of softballs.
Recommended by my wife’s boss, it was a straight uphill walk, but one of the better pasta meals I ate on the trip.
So we hike up the hill in Venazzi to get to Billy, and it was worth it. As we are waiting to order the folks next to us are trying to get a picture so I take one for them and then they take one of us. Nancy asks where they are from and it is Austin. When we tell them we are from Victoria one of the gentlemen says I have a buddy who has the ER contract at Detar in Victoria. Turns out he is good friends with my wife’s boss, small world. The walls were covered with old fish pictures. There was everything from marlin, tuna, shark, and short bill spearfish.
Of course I bought the t-shirt.
This house says Italy. View of one of the Five Towns from the boat.
Of course this is just a taste of the pictures, so there you go. My impression of Italy, glad I went once, but will probably not return. It was cool, but kind of a been there done that thing. Funny how as soon as we started home it was planning for next years big adventure, and it will be a doozy. It takes lots of planning by Nancy to get these trips right, and Australia will be a real challenge. As much as I love to fish, she loves to travel. I am already salivating about a 3 day fishing, snorkeling trip on the Great Barrier Reef.
So there you have it. I meant so post a thing or two while gone, but by time we were done each day it was to bed and back at it first thing each morning. There is never enough time.
I will be back on the water by Thursday, but not sure where. So if you have been out on the water drop me note. Has the Gulf stayed outrageously good? How about the bass on Coleto or Fayette? Time to get back to the business at hand. Shoedog and I will also be trying to work out a time to hit Texoma for some big stripers. I appreciate you all sticking with me while I was gone. Fall is here and our best fishing is coming and so will the reports. So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.
Good Luck and Tight Lines