But to move on, here's everything and definitely more than you ever wanted to know about this past Sunday!
The original plan was that I would take a bus out to Valfabricca, Jane and Betty Lou would pick me up there and we would go back to their place, have dinner (cooked by the owner) in the agriturismo's dining room, then sleep and wake up read to hunt truffles.
So I needed one more place to walk and decided on the Etruscan Arch, built in the 3rd century B.C. by the, you guessed it, Etruscans. In 40 B.C. the Roman Augustus had the words Augusta Perusia chiseled into the arch facing after Rome had conquered Perugia. I took many pictures throughout the walk there and back, of course and will start laying them out now.
These first three were on the way down, down, down to the arch.
Only thing is when I was almost all the way down to where I needed to be, I saw a flight of stairs going up, up, up and decided to go up there first. The views were incredible, however, the distance was hazy - I could see it but it doesn't show up well in the photos.
After that orgy of gorgeousness, back down I went and finally got myself around the corner and there it was. huge and very solid and mighty looking. Back in the day, these walls and especially the portals through them must have really created an impression of invulnerability. Although apparently not enough of one since Perugia was under attack and conquered more than once. (Ooh, and my train is just flying past a huge lake with mountains in the background and after pouring rain this morning, the sun is now popping out so aren't I glad to be traveling away from Perugia!?)
Only the arch area...
And just the wall starting away and up the street.
Down at the bottom across the street from the arch is where the University for Foreigners is located. This is the sign over their door:
Then just a few more shots...
And here's a little test here to see if you've been reading. If you have you should recognize this - I did when I came to it and thought "oh, I've been down there before".
psst - it's the acqueduct - I bet my sister got it right! :)
I then made a brief attempt to find the Museo de Cattedrale and was successful but it was just time for them to close for 2 hours. So took a picture of the cathedral's cloister and two of the many coats of arms which are all over the walls, along with various other sculptures.
And, finally, it was late enough that I could go down to the bus station to get my bus. Another walk through that Rocca Paolini place and really wishing I had managed to get a tour of it. Down the three escalators and found the bus station with no problems really. Can you tell I'm building up to something? Go in the very dead and mostly closed terminal, finally find a ticket place open, go in to buy my ticket, show her which one I want on the schedule I picked up from the Tourist Information office (where they had pointed out the Valfabricca buses to me) and, of course, there were no buses at all to Valfabricca on Sunday, let alone the one I had planned on taking.
I stood around flummoxed for a bit but decided all I could do was call Jane and tell her which I did and told her that at this point I was ready to forget the whole thing because it was all way too complicated for me. She said they were just getting ready to leave to go to Gubbio and so they could "drop by" and pick me up. I was getting guiltier by the minute because originally I had thought there had to be a way that I could get myself out there Monday morning, be met by either Jane or the truffle people or something, but I hadn't been able to find a way. And since the only Monday bus to Valfabricca (which was not where they were staying, just the closest to them) that would work for our schedule left Perugia at 6:30 a.m., we had opted for the Sunday non-existent bus.
Jane and Betty had come to Perugia earlier in the week and said they could get to the parking lot which was there at the bus station and we could meet there. So after several more phone calls, as I searched for and found the lot, then found where the entrance was, then checked to see if they were finding it, we finally met up, I hopped in and off we went. Betty Lou was driving and she did great, but it's almost impossible not to make a few wrong turns, with signs pointing every direction, GPS saying turn right, then turn right, and Italians flying by at who knows what speed. But finally they got themselves away from Perugia and basically knew where they were going. Meanwhile, I was really unhappy about the trouble I was causing.
They decided we'd go on to Gubbio as they had planned and that was fine with me. We arrived and spent some time walking one or two of the streets there, me feeling bad because they could have been there at least two hours before and spending the whole afternoon there.
But I did take a few pictures. :) Of course, I don't know what they are basically, cause I had no information on Gubbio. I have to say, I like Perugia better. Gubbio's storico centro had all old buildings like all of the cities/towns/ villages, but they were mostly crammed full of stuff for tourists to buy which I don't find very attractive. We had a little glass of wine and some munchies which I think made all of us feel better.
I'll put in some pictures here since it's one more place I've been, but I really have no idea what they're of (except places in Gubbio because since I didn't know I was going there, I wasn't prepared with a guide or anything, so I apologize for that.
So there you have a sort of pitiful but picturesque look at Gubbio. :)
And, finally, with periodic "recalculatings" on GPS's part, and Jane studying their map, and a few more little stresses and strains, we got to their agriturismo and wow, what a trek UP! But beautiful and so quiet. I only took a couple of pictures there and was so brain dead from worrying about messing things up that I didn't even think to take one of everyone at dinner. Dinner was good though and part of it was ricotta cheese that Jane and Betty Lou had helped with and watched being made that morning and we also had homemade gnocchi that the other two ladies (a mother and daughter from Arizona and California) had helped make that morning. All quite delicious and very filling.
One of several cats...
Well, I feel like I've just blathered on forever and I'm sure I've worn you out - I know I've worn myself out, so this is it for Sunday. Tomorrow is the hunt!