Monday, April 23, 2012

The Long Lost Puente: Part 1.75

Hello fellow travelers, family members and any other followers out there. What a horrible little blogger I have been. I have a backlog of things to talk about, but I wanted my stories to be told in order... and the longer I wait to start relating them, the more things I have to tell in order to catch up to the present, and consequently, the more burdensome the task becomes (in my mind, anyway). But no more! This week, I will give you all the pertinent information and you will soon know about my life in Spain in the here and now. Not to be a tease, but there are SO many exciting things happening that I can't wait to divulge. But first... let's finish up what has become the most drawn out story ever, that of my puente adventure back in the early part of December...

[imagine blurring images and flashback sound effect, a là Wayne's World, as we go back to that long lost time...]

Como and Lago Maggiore! (December 7th-8th 2012)
First lake view as we began our trip.
 After a lovely time in Milano, one of my new friends and I traveled north by train to the lovely town of Como where we met up with L who I mentioned in part 1.5. After spending a very fun night there, the three of us spent the day (my birthday!) driving around the beautiful Lago Maggiore through a slew of quaint little towns. Among them were: Lugano, Bellinzona, Brissago, Cannobio, Verbania and Stresa. We even passed through Switzerland! All in all, a whirlwind couple of days, and while I generally prefer to stay and soak up a place before I move on, I can't say that I didn't have a good time. Not a bad way to turn 24. :)

Because my memory of those days has faded, I will let the pictures do the talking.
What a lovely place this would be to live! Wake up to the snowy Alps!
Oh, hello Castle! You know, no big deal.

Why drive over or around the Swiss and Italian Alps when you can drive THROUGH them. This tunnel was something like  10 miles long!

An absolutely beautiful day for a drive through Italian Lake Country. Just wish we could have stopped longer to smell the flowers
Just sigh. Lovely paradise.
A little too chilly for a dip, although there are stairs going right into the water :)

The travelers. In silhouette.
There were houses UNDERneath the road. Crazy.

Our awesome rental: The Yellow Panda (thank you, Fiat, for the perfect name)
That's an island. I wonder how they get to work?
Last shot of pretty lake country before driving back to Como to return the Yellow Panda.

After returning the car, L. and I sent my new friend from Milano on his way and then headed for Bergamo, aka the actual location of RyanAir's "Milan" airport,  where Liz would be staying for a bit and from where I would be embarking upon the next leg of my epically long adventure the following day. We arrived very late and very hungry... and desperate for a good wifi connection so that I could talk to family on my birthday (because yes, it was still December 8th!).

The next morning (and I use that term very graciously as I don't consider it to be morning if it's still dark out), I caught the bus to the airport, went through the same RyanAir stress-fest, and made it on my flight A-OK. Now, while I don't know if I would choose the dawn flight if I had other options, but flying before the sun comes up does have its absolutely breathtaking advantage: Getting to see the sun rise from the sky!

It was a whirlwind of a week in Italy, and I probably should have caught a catnap on the plane ride, but I was excited and then some as I flew to my next destination, Thessaloniki, Greece, for a weekend of a different alphabet, feta, gyros, but most importantly, Lindy Hop! To be continued... :)