Tuesday, June 14, 2011

the ultimate STAIRMASTER

Today was my favorite day so far. Cinque Terre! This morning we had breakfast at 7:15 and left by 8 on a private bus. It was a 2.5 ride to the train station then 20 minutes to the first village Monterosso. When we got off the train in Monterosso we all got so excited. The beach was absolutely beautiful. Also, there weren’t many people around for once so that was nice.

We walked up a hill, along the ridge of a cliff and arrived at the beginning of our “hike.”

Now, yesterday Massimo had ASSURED us that today wasn’t going to be some strenuous hike but a “concentrated walk”. Baloney. Baloney. Baloney! The beginning of this .. walk… consisted of about 30 million steep stone steps. We were all huffing and puffing and decided we had to rock just a sports bra because it was so hot. It was cool though because when we got to the first plateau there was a lemonade stand made from lemons grown right there on the pathway. Thankfully the path flattened out from here just a little ups and downs and I loved it- the view was unreal!
Once we made it to Vernazza we were all so exhausted from our 3 hour trek! We split up in groups and got to eat wherever we wanted. Stephanie, Holly, Erin, Rachel, and myself went to an open air cafĂ© right next to the water for sandwiches and personal pizzas. We enjoyed the food but enjoyed our cute Italian waiter even more! We all met back up and went down to the beach. Even though the water was FREEEZING we were like “when are we going to get another chance to swim in the Mediterranean?” so we went for it! It was so salty and so easy to float. I loved getting to swim and relax on the beach for the afternoon. 

We boarded the train once again and got back on our bus. The exhaustion set in and it was a very quiet ride home. Since it was our last night in Italy we wanted to have a nice sit down meal instead of our pretty usual grab and go meal. We didn’t have time to shower so we all changed and prowled around looking for a restaurant that had room for 18. We ate at a cute neighborhood place with great food. I had a penne pasta dish and also sampled every other dish on the table! After dinner we wanted to get gelato for the last time – so sad! I got my new favorite pistachio. Strangely enough I ran into my cousin Jenalee there! (no we didn’t plan to meet up) its so fun running into her in this far away place. She told me that all the stores were still open and would be for the night because it was the beginning of fashion week! No wonder the city was buzzing with excitement. Unfortunately the real festivities were taking place down the street and we didn’t have time to go. David told us we had to be completely packed by 3AM so he and Massimo could get our luggage down stairs and loaded in the bus- how nice of them! So we headed home and packed. It took me a while since my side of the room was practically a yard sale! I spent the rest of the night trying to upload pictures to my computer and post blogs from days that I had missed. Now it is 2:30 AM and I’m finally going to bed! Have to be downstairs at 4:30 ayyyy. Greece tomorrow! 

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