Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Hi, guys!  And welcome back!  To me that is.  I have had no availability for many days, which has been frustrating.  Not just for this site, but for everything!  Oh, well.  I arrived in Milan last night and will be leaving tomorrow, Thursday, for Athens, Greece for a week.  Guisi & Krus were both so suppose to be going tomorrow till Sunday, but Krus was robbed in Belgium and has just gotten back to Italy, after 20 days.  She was waiting on her papers to be re-issued (visa & passport).  She has a passport, but not the ‘official’ visa so her agency, and I agree, said it is too dangerous to go.  I am, as she, extremely sad.  This was our last trip together . . . .

So, I am a bit fuzzy on where I left off.  OH!!!  Vienna.  Well, it was a nice city.  Very grand.  I imagine it is probably gorgeous in the summer with everything in bloom.  It is the home of Mozart and the Hapsburg family.  Who are the Hapsburg’s??  It was this family, I hope I am spelling it correctly, whose nephew was assassinated outside Austria and he was the heir to the throne.  So what did they do — started WWI.  Learn your history, I sure am!!  Germany took the fall, but didn’t do it!  Their palaces are obscenely huge and glorious.  I went past the winter one, went inside the summer one.  I had to laugh, you were not allowed to take pictures.  I am sure that is to push for you to purchase a book on the way out!  It is beautiful, but I cannot imagine taking all that time just to get around it!  And what did the poorer people of the area think when they saw such grandeur?  They say it rivals Versailles.  Haven’t been there yet, but will let you know when that day comes!!  Not on this trip.

After Vienna, I went to Venice for 2 days and had a ball!  Spent the afternoon on Friday with 2 women from England and spent the later afternoon/evening with 4 college girls from Portugal, studying currently in Rome.  What a great day!!

The weather has started shifting to rain.  A lot of it.  I left Venice Sunday to Trieste.  A stop I could have done without.  Now, Trieste is way over on the eastern side, next to Slovenia.  But, people were not so very friendly.  The middle-age/older ones the worst.  I used Airbnb for my lodgings.  I used them 3 times before, but this was the one that bust open poorly.  My host, because of ‘my age’ as he told me, put me in his apartment in the next building.  Not in the house he advertised.  I found a scorpion in my shower, so no, I waited to shower in Milan!  When I tried to talk to him, he became agitated and the story just kept changing as to the problems.  I was quite happy to get out of there and be here, in happy Milan!  I don’t know if it is because Trieste is so eastern, but it wasn’t like being in Italy.  Italians are nice, warm people.  These people did not seem happy.  The town is older, not the cleanest.  They just might be, lets say, more traditional than the rest of Italy. . . . .

My hotel is Idea Hotel by the Milan Marpensa Airport.  It is wonderful!!  I forgot how nice it is to travel using hotels!  The place is modern design, lights are all sensor motioned and your room key turns on your lights in your room.  The staff is great, friendly & warm.  I find it quite cool, and advanced!  You have to take your keys with you so all the lights will shut off.  Very green!

As I said, on to Athens.  I am happy to be moving away from the rains, a little warmer temps.  Everything I read says Athens is beautiful.  From there, I move on to Thailand.

Believe it or not, in just 4 weeks from today, I will be catching a plane to Salt Lake City, Utah.  The ‘abroad’ part of my trip will be over.  I don’t know how well I will handle being back in the states, but I do look forward to it!


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