Monthly Archives: July 2014

And yet even more Sicily!!

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If you haven’t noticed, Daddy took a lot of pictures, at least by his standards (over 1000).  So he’s had a lot of sorting, editing and documenting to do.  In this episode we stayed in Syracuse, toured some ancient Roman and Greek ruins and structures and took in one last night of Siracusa.

Sicily part 8

Today we got going at a somewhat respectable time, 10:45.  Good thing too, because we had a ten minute drive ahead of us.  We went to see the Greek ruins in North Syracuse.  Quite the popular spot with all the RVs, tour buses and cars.  We saw an old Roman theater, or tiny colosseum with no upright walls.  It was enough to visualize the size and they used it in the same way they used the one in Rome.  From there we saw a gorge with orange and lemon trees and a massive cave.  Zayne loved the cave.  We then walked up the hill to the Greek theater, which was much better preserved.  In fact, they were building a stage and had all the lighting rigs up as it is still in use and has been since Plato and Archimede’s days.  Pretty cool, so we took it all in and then had lunch on the 2000+ year old steps.  For the record, Zayne has now been in two ancient Greek theaters, one Roman theater/colosseum and one Sicilian puppet theater, but still has never been to a movie theater.  I’m sure child protective services will be giving us a call.

After a hiatus at the apt, we went out to see the puppet show.  But first we stopped to buy some water, wine and other essentials.  We were actually looking for a wine tasting place and somewhere to buy various liqueurs.  We took in the puppet show, which was quite cool.  A love/war story based in medieval times.  Some of the battle scenes were quite graphic as two different puppets heads were chopped off, and 1 puppet was cut in half.  The show was well worth it and we felt like we did something solely for the kids.

After the show we found our wine tasting…and liqueur tasting..and a bit of chocolate for the kids.  I can’t describe to you how much the Sicilians love kids.  Nor could either of us count how many times Capriana has been rubbed or patted on the head.  Nor how many time she’s been called Bella something or something Bella.  After we bought more wine and some limoncello, we went to our restaurant.  The gluten free one in the piazza duomo, Gran Caffe.  Also the one owned by our landlord.  This time we were on a mission, or at least had a plan.  This time fresh seafood AND pizza.  The swordfish was really good, the Sicilians
like their salt, but the fish wasn’t very big, so we ordered another pizza.  I could have eaten another one by myself.  Our landlord had given us some kind of wonderful looking bread/chees/pepper thing, but the waiter took it away informing him we were all gluten free.  Ahh, I should have kept one, but then trying to explain to Zayne and Capriana why they couldn’t have any would be painful.  Especially to Capriana who doesn’t understand yet.  No matter, with the “chips” he brought (French fries), Zayne and Capriana were more than happy.  Then they ate them the European way with ketchup and mayonnaise.  Daddy didn’t approve, not because it was European, but because it was mayonnaise.  After all that food we ordered dessert, why would you not?  Gelato, per favore.  And what do you do when you finish that?  You order some biscotti limonda.  Then you order more for the last two days of the trip.  And then while daddy waits for the check Vinicio hands a bag full of them to mommy!  Looks,like we will have to share with someone.  Still can’t believe those were gluten free.  After leaving the restaurant, we let the kids run around in the piazza.  And the moment Mel and I started talking the kids were gone.  Fortunately, Mel noticed and we both spotted them about 50 yards away heading down a street.  I wasn’t at a dead run when I caught them, but I was close, fortunately with Capriana in tow, Zayne moves slower.  I rounded them up and scolded them, and back to the piazza we went.  They then proceeded to chase me and play tag, which was fun.

We took one last stop at the fountain of Arkimede, and headed back, about 10:15.
Great parenting?  Bbut “when in Sicily”………

More Sicily!

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Easter in Sicily!  It didn’t quite turnout like we had planned, in fact, nowhere near what we had planned.  Maybe should have set that alarm….  We rebounded, made the best of it and still got into the cathedral.  Pics below, journal entry below that.

Sicily part 7

Easter.  Rise and shine and off to church!  Except for 1 minor problem, we slept in…..again….quite the habit on this trip. I admit we’re not usually ones to be up and out by 8 or 9, but usually closer to 10.  This trip we’ve been fortunate to be out by noon.  And in Italy everything starts closing at 12:30.  So we’ve seen a lot of closed shops and found a lot of options waiting.  Mind you, it’s still been a great time, but our whole schedule is off by 2 hours, which actually works in regards to dinner.  Back to Easter.  Since we were so late on room departure we thought we’d walk around in our Easter clothes, see some things, stop by a market and “pop” into a church and say some prayers or maybe even catch an Easter service.  We found an open air market closing, bought some strawberries, and saw some sites.  We found a tour boat leaving in 1/2 an hour, but had another tour at 4:30.  We told the crew we’d be back for that one.  We continued walking, this time with a better game plan, and passed 4 churches, all locked up.  Back to the apt., ate lunch, the kids grabbed a quick nap and mommy did some laundry.  Up and at ’em to the boat tour.  As we rounded the corner we saw the crew waiting outside with the other people, when they saw us they started boarding.  We were only 2 minutes late, a miracle with two kids, and walking.  The boat tour was nothing extravagant or overly exciting, just your standard tourist fare to see the city from the water.  Check another thing off the list Mel wanted to do.  After the boat ride we strolled along the streets back to the main piazza, and low and behold the duomo was open.  We took the opportunity to go in and sit down and thank God for our many blessings.  After leaving the church it was staring to rain so we ventured back to the apt looking for the puppet theater along the way.  We found the theater and the next show was in 15 minutes, only the laundry on the terrace of our apt would be soaked.  We made a reservation for the next evening at the managers suggestion.  We returned to the apt to fix dinner and call it a day.  Now the dinner, pretty, pretty, pretty good.  We had bought some sausage the day before and for dinner, we cut it up and mixed it in with the left over pasta.  Ya, I know, leftovers in Italy?  Yes, and better than the original.

Oh, man just for the record, two kids cooped up in the tiny apt while we tried to make dinner was a hair pulling experience.  Especially when you consider the 4 different levels this apt has.  The kids would appear so tired out seeing the sights only to perk way up once we returned to the apt.  Thank goodness we rented the apartments though, I can’t imagine living out of a hotel room.