So my first day was mostly spent wandering around - didn't try to see any of the "sights" but enjoyed the wandering and especially the sea. I took some pictures of the hotel where I'm staying for the ridiculously low price of 49E per night. And basically, I don't have any complaints about it. It's probably one of the cleaner, quieter, prettier places I've stayed. But...I'm not crazy about their breakfasts - lots and lots of bread products, coffee type cakes and croissants and homemade yogurt which is not much thicker than heavy cream. The first day there were no eggs and somewhere I found a list of extras you could purchase at breakfast including several ways with eggs. Today (Saturday) there were hardboiled eggs and I guess I owe an apology to our hotel in Florence because I said it seemed weird for the eggs to be peeled already by somebody but the ones today weren't peeled and by the time I got the peel off what was obviously a very fresh egg, there was very little egg left. Also the internet connection is quite erratic, particularly in the evenings which is when travelers would want to use it. The air conditioning quit working at some point yesterday but that got fixed as soon as I told them about it. And...I'm pretty disappointed that apparently the roof terrace that is featured on their website as a lovely place to visit or watch the sunrise or whatever, isn't available. I have asked numerous times why the chairs that are up there (cause I went up to it and the door wasn't locked so I went out) are all covered in green tarp-like wraps and I think I am slowly being given to understand that the third floor (which accesses the terrace) is the hotel section for nuns so we're not allowed to go up there I guess. When I do my review, I'm sure going to suggest that they don't post it as one of the lovely features. I was really looking forward to it.
So, enough of that - overall and for the price, it's very nice - just those frustrations. Plus, there is only one desk person who speaks relatively good English which since I speak no Italian, I can't really complain.
So, my first morning, I took some pictures of the hotel inside and will post those first.
So even though I was getting a late start, I decided at least some sightseeing was in order. First of all, I walked up the street that I was afraid to walk up my first night after the hotel person had told me there were two restaurants on that street. I found three actually and noted them down in my phone. And then I just basically wandered around a lot of twisty, narrow, old, old streets. Sicily's history goes back to before Roman times (actually I don't know if they have a definite "this is when people first settled here" date) and I know none of the buildings are ancient but everything does look very old. And it's a different look from Florence. You see some fairly ornate buildings but a lot are quite plain - no decorative doorways and windows, etc. But that didn't stop me from taking pictures! I probably won't even know where I was for most of them but if I recognize anything, I'll give a shout. I do know I was in Ortigia and up until some point I was walking up the street around the corner from my hotel. How's that for precise?
Walking back to the hotel I passed a restaurant tucked in on a narrow street and they had plastic cubes like you usually put photos in on all the outdoor tables. But theirs had some of the things you could order which I thought was a neat idea. One of the sides said "apertif - 6 or 7 finger foods 2E with a glass of wine". And I thought that was pretty neat too. So I asked the woman who came out if she would show me on my map where I was so I could find it again and then I came home, cooled off (it is HOT here) and went back out later, found it, and had a real interesting assortment of little bits to eat, the most unusual one being a little container with I think strips of onion and pineapple!! I'm pretty sure it was marinated in something - maybe close to being pickled cause the pineapple chunks were softened. But it was strangely tasty as was everything else. Then I ordered an "insalata misto" which had bits of fruit in it and a very tasty (probably olive oil and balsamic) dressing. Oh, and the restaurant's name was "Clandestino" which I liked. And I think actually they're mostly about drinking cause their actual menu (aside from the cubes on the table) was nothing but liquor. Another thing on the cube though was a 6E breakfast which I may try when I get too tired of the weird stuff downstairs. So that was all nice and I came back and I think that's the night I finished the last day in Florence post.
And now I've finished this one and may do a little better remembering Saturdays doings although one never knows with old brains.
P.S. I found this link for a "making papyrus paper" but I don't like it as well as the method I learned about on the video I watched. It's strange how different the two were but I suppose there are ways and other ways. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCR8n7qS43w A presto!