Tuesday morning we left Florence and took the train to Monterosso, Cinque Terre. A gorgeous day and a spectacular place! Right on the Ligurian Bay which leads to the Mediterranean Sea. A bit of a rocky start as we were quite sure we could walk half mile with luggage to hotel. Saw quite a few incredulous glances and even an offer of help as we struggled up the wrong path and skipped the easy foot tunnel. Oh well! That was the only time we did that! Lots of people were hiking up cliffs or swimming or shopping but we chose to sit at some of the cafes with beautiful views and beer. Then wine and apperitivo. Gelato of course. We did sit on the beach for awhile and dipped our toes into the rather icy water. Had a simple pizza dinner with our ever present model and her boyfriend companions. Couldn't seem to shake those two. Anyway,it was a beautiful place and relaxation was our goal. Didn't realize we were getting ready to meet "crazy man".
Took our last Italian train to Gallarte, about 30 minutes out of Milan, just getting closer so trip to airport will be easier on Thursday. He picked us up at the train station and after telling us he was sorry he didn't speak much English, proceeded to try all the way home anyway. Apparently if you repeat everything 3 things we'll understand better. The hotel is a 14th century castle but we're staying in the new part. The only restaurant in walking distance is closed today. Open yesterday,open tomorrow,closed today. That might have been 5 times. Worried about opening and locking your door? He'll make you practice several times in front of him. Not sure what he's saying? He has many hand gestures and sound effects to help. Might be a good charades partner. The best was taking us to a restaurant of his choice and walking in with us to explain to the wait staff that we obviously needed help (probably did) so they were to call him when we were finished so he could pick us up. Ok dad. There was so much more but that's all my fingers can give him right now. He was very sweet and tried so hard and I appreciate that, but really stressed me out. I had visions of him checking our door last night to be sure it was locked correctly. I'm headed home this morning while Bob will fly to Germany to visit friends before returning. Once I've reached home I may have some final thoughts for those of you who heard enough from me! Ciao!