Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Day 14

Monday the 16th of January
Well here we are again! Presently, we are on the coach to Verona after an eventful day in Stresa and Verbania, which are approximately a half hour from Switzerland. Interestingly enough, we didn’t see snow falling in the Alps, but have just witnessed this on the outskirts of Milan….much to the boys’ delight!

We are now headed for Verona, approximately a 3.5 hour drive from Verbania and have  already had our stop at the roadside “Autogrill” where the boys have again piled themselves up with all sorts of goodies.  

The house of Juliet, which we visited today, made famous thanks to William Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

Of course, most of the boys couldn’t wait to get the chance to rub Juliet’s breast, hoping that it will bring them good luck in finding love. (especially Mingi)

The ancient Roman amphitheatre in Verona is even today the place where many top English and foreign bands play and where operas/plays are performed thanks to the superb acoustics.
Verona is a particularly pretty town, as you can see.

We have arrived in Venice and been transported to the youth hostel by boat, because there are no roads here only canals. It is VERY cold!

Here is St Mark’s square at night


Sean Maley celebrated his 19th birthday while we were in Paris and Justin Bieber put in a special appearance for the occasion.

Kyle enjoys yet another pizza – this time in Paris. He is doing a tasting competition to find the best pizza in the countries we visit. We’ll let you know the verdict at the end of the tour.
Montmartre, Paris: A few of us took the Metro and climbed countless steps to the summit of Montmartre, centre of artistic experimentation which overlooks Paris. There we walked the narrow streets, visited the Sacre Coeur and the square where many artists – some good, some not so good – exhibit their works.

Ms Vial and Kyle with the basilica of Sacre Coeur in the background – the arduous climb was certainly worth it.

On the night train from Paris to Milan, Lisa models the gorgeous purple hat she bought in a fashionable Paris boutique. Ros couldn’t resist the temptation to try on the new chapeau, asking: “How do I look?” We saw a strong resemblance to Agatha Christies’ Miss Marples.

Father and daughter, Jim and Sarah, on the shore of Lake Maggiore – the largest lake in Italy – enjoy the sunshine; while the boys brace themselves for the cold weather at Stresa and Verbania where the frost and sleet were clear indications of the freezing conditions.

The cable car ride from Stresa at 205m to Mottarone at 1,385m above sea level proved an exciting experience with grand views of Lake Maggiore, its islands and the surrounding mountains.

Juan Pablo is hoping for good luck as he touches the breast of Juliet’s statue in Verona.

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