Saturday, January 9, 2010

Day 2: Orvieto, Maranello & Bologna...

Saturday morning we jumped in the car early and took off up north. The drive was really fun, we drove through the Umbria and Tuscany regions and saw so many wonderful little towns perched up on the cliffs.

Rick loved driving on the autostrade! He was a very good driver the entire trip and even drove just like a true Italian by the end of the 18 days! We were actually a little worried about him coming back home.

We stopped along the way in an ancient hill town called Orvieto. It is situated on top of vertical cliff walls and is breathtaking. It is one of the cities that I fell in love with when I went to Italy. We stopped in the cathedral, looked over the edges of the cliffs at the views of the Umbria countryside and grabbed some pizza. Then we jumped back on the road to head further north.

The weather was a little chilly, but gorgeous and it started snowing when we reached Florence. It was so pretty.

The next stop was hands-down Andrew's favorite part of the entire trip to Italy. Everyone else enjoyed it (well, those of the male gender at least), but nobody cried actual tears like Andrew!

The Galleria Ferrari is located in Maranello, near Modena. It is a company museum that is right next door to the Ferrari Factory. We tried as hard as we could to get a tour of the Ferrari Factory set up before we go, but it was quite expensive... you had to either own a Ferrari or have a receipt for a recently purchased one. We decided the museum would do just fine.

The workers said that we could take pictures of the cars as much as we would like, but the only rule is that we could NOT touch the cars. The first one that brought tears to Andrew's eyes was the 458 Italia, the newest Ferrari that Andrew had only seen a concept photo of. To say he was thrilled was an understatement. When I came up to the car, I saw him softly caressing the back of the car. I said, "Andrew, they said you can NOT touch the cars!" Rick was standing right there, looking sheepish. He decided to admit his transgressions as well, "I did too!" As I walked around the corner a minute later, I saw Nathan kissing one! Boys will be boys, I guess.

Janessa and I both liked the California Ferrari. We decided that if someone was going to give us a free one, this is the one we would take.

The workers at the museum said that we were very lucky to be there that day. The snow was pretty bad (over a foot outside) and it kept everyone inside for the most part. They were not used to that much snow at all in that area. They said that on Saturdays there were usually so many people that it was hard to even photograph the cars. We did not have any problems, the boys photographed every angle of every car! We marked this down as a lucky day, which was rare later on in the trip!

Nathan has decided that this is his chosen occupation. He thinks the uniform is pretty darn cool.

These chips were at the Ferrari cafe. Who wouldn't want a bite out of a Teenager potato chip? I thought that was pretty funny!

After a little longer than I would have liked, and about 1,000 pictures later, we headed to Bologna to check into our hotel. The kids crashed during the short drive, but quickly revived once we got there.

The hotel was fun and the staff was amazing. They sent us to a perfect restaurant in the city that had very good, traditional bolognese food. I had lasagne with meat sauce (bolognese sauce is a hearty meat sauce named for this region) and it was wonderful. I forgot to take pictures.

In the city we had a very hard time finding a place to park. The snow had covered the cars and motorino with so much snow, we think the drivers were stuck there and too worried about moving them! The people there said that they had lived there so many years and had never seen snow like that. Lucky us!


Deon said...

The photos of the green countryside must be paintings. Tell me they are paintings! Nothing could look that beautiful in real life, could it? Cuz if it was real, I would be doing an "Andrew" and sobbing my head off.

Keep the posts comin'!