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Italia 9 – Cinque Terre by Mikael
August 2, 2010, 11:16 pm
Filed under: A Little Me, Friends, Good Things, How Embarassing!, Laughs, Remembering, Roam, Stories, Try

June 13th– Traveling day from Milan to Cinque Terre.  Long train rides.  We had a momentary stop in Genova before continuing to La Spezia train station… while sitting across from 2 very cute Italians.  I noticed one on the platform and was silently praying he would sit near us.  He did.  Then unexpectedly, a friend of his actually showed up at the next stop!  Both were personal trainers.  One was from Sicily and he wore a shirt that was a nice icebreaker (not to mention, he had a killer butt).  We talked, swapped Facebooks, and I was so happy that they had assigned seats next to us. DINGDINGDING!

Cinque Terre is 5 villages in the cliffs overlooking the sea: Rio Maggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso al Mare (from south to north).  We stayed in Corniglia which was considered the quietest of the villages. In general, the villages were decorated with highly colored buildings, very cute, filled with natives and tourists alike.  Very beautiful, relaxing, quiet, even though the weather didn’t always cooperate.  We saw the most rain while we were in Cinque Terre.

After catching the bus into town and hauling our suitcases up and down stairs and steep streets, we finally checked into our bed and breakfast which basically gave us a mini-apartment to ourselves! There was even a little kitchen and a garden with lemon trees.  Not to mention there was a killer view of the ocean!  It was very cute and definitely worth the money.  If anyone is interested, Le Terrazze was the B&B company (La Serra was our place).  Mari made a splendid breakfast that Twinner and I couldn’t get enough of!  Oh yeah, btw… orange juice over in Italy is a berry red.  Weird, right?

So after settling in, it was lunch time!   Twinner and I stopped at a cafe right by our place, had some yummy lasagna, explored the nooks and crannies of Corniglia, then decided to do one of the trails to one of the other villages.  We decided to head to Vernazza after paying what I thought was far too much for a trail pass that would last for three days.  The hike there?  Quite challenging! Up and down with many stumbles by both of us.  Lots of pretty flowers and big bugs to see.  Twinner said I was highly entertaining to go hiking with because of my exclamations and funny ways of conquering particularly steep portions of the path.  She scared me a lot because she would yelp/scream when she stumbled or saw a big bug so I constantly thought she was dying.

After about an hour and a half, we made it to Vernazza.  Much more bustling than our own Corniglia.  We had a gelato pick-me-up, Twinner sat on a wet bench (HA!), and found a cove nearby where there was a mini-beach and a bit of a dock that some daring people jumped off of into the sea including an very old guy wearing a blue and white striped speedo.  Many pictures were taken there of the two of us getting splashed and dancing on the edge.  I also had an objective of getting a good picture of the waves hitting the rocks.  It started to get cold and the sun had started it’s descent into the ocean, so we decided to head back to Corniglia which took less time this time around, grabbed some panini for dinner and called it a night.

Twinner and I decided that our “vacation” part of our trip would be used in Cinque Terre, less sight seeing and more relaxing… so we slept in, had breakfast (DIVINE!), then took another nap before making the trek to the two villages to the south: Manarola and Rio Maggiore.  We wanted to be able to say that we at least had been in each village.  The hike this time was considerably easier than the hike between Corniglia and Vernazza.  In Manarola, we found yet another beach/cove, stuck our feet in for a bit and laid out in the sun for an hour before taking to the Passegiata dell’Amore, the fifteen minute passage to Rio Maggiore.  It may have been our timing, but no one was really around so we walked back to Corniglia after only a short time.  Directly south of Corniglia before the train station and the trail to Manarola, there is a flight of winding stairs… 383 supposedly.  But I counted myself and got 393.  Very tough to trek up but it was a helluva workout…

That night, we were feeling spaghetti again so we found a restaurant, again right by our place (wasn’t hard to be since the town was so small).  I had heard that the wine in Cinque Terre was some of the best so I had to try the house white wine there.  Twinner didn’t like wine… so I ended up drinking the whole bottle by myself.  I wanted my euros worth!  The spaghetti there was very tasty, but I started getting full but Twinner said I should probably keep eating to stave off the drunken feelings.  Haha!  Let’s just say, I was more than a little tipsy for sure.  Twinner said I giggled a lot and that she wished she had her camera to film.  The most embarrassing moment was perhaps when I was laughing so hard that I let out a little “toot” which in turn made me laugh harder, turn bright red, and ask Twinner repeatedly if she heard it… I probably seem like a bad person for posting my drunken endeavors.  But aren’t they funny? And I’m not even done yet…

When we walked back to our B&B, she wanted to see just how gone I was and asked me to walk a straight line.  Which I did.  Then she proceeded to say, “No! One foot in front of the other, toe-to-heel.”  Which I did… for two steps before falling to the ground and cackling like a fool.  Yep, that was me.  The next day, I remembered that I made her go with me to find a treat, and we found a lemon cake that was soooooo good (what it is with alcohol and how it gives me munchies, I’ll never know).  Wow, I nearly forgot about that!  Then we made tea to sit in the garden and sup… where I completely stumbled over my chair and nearly missed it sitting down because it was so dark.  So that night I definitely proved a family member wrong by getting drunk off of white wine.  I won’t lie… it was very funny! =)  Sleep came really easily that night… after the memories flowed to me of what happened during that night, causing me to crack up in bed, and asking Twinner if she really heard me fart earlier. Yep, I’m that immature.

Now we are up to our last full day in Cinque Terre. We rode the train over to Monterosso al Mare because we had heard they had the best beaches but there was no way we would hike nearly 3 hours to get there especially through the rumored hardest hikes in the region.  After renting a couple of chairs on the pebbly beach, we laid out, played in the water, and made friends with the girl sitting next to us who was studying abroad in Italy but had a weekend free to come relax there.  Despite the clouds that circled the sky for most of the day, we got a good amount of sun.  It was around this time when we realized how good of a Mediterranean tan we had… oh, how I miss it!  Sun screen was much used this time so we wouldn’t get horrible sunburns like we did on the Lido beach.  The guy who rented us the chairs was way cute and talked with us quite a bit as he worked.  What is it with Italian men?  Seriously?!

That night we went back to the same restaurant as the night before because I had seen something on the menu that was a regional dish that I was anxious to try.  Trenette al Pesto.  Verdict– Oh my holy yumminess!  I fell in love with pesto right then and there.  It was the best dish I had had in Italy.  No wine that night.  Just excellent food with a waiter who thought we were funny.  Packing ensued that evening for the next day we were to head back to Rome…

There was no breakfast the next morning because it was raining cats and dogs and breakfast was served in Mari’s garden… So when we reached La Spezia we had muffins and chicken nuggets for breakfast. It was a very long ride back to Rome.  Luckily this time, we had AC.

For the last installment (have we already reached that point?), I will be reviewing more things that I learned about Italy, other cool bits, and going over our last night in Rome.  Come back soon to find out how the trip ends!  There are still boys, food, and drinks to come! =)

Remember, most of the photos are online now if you want to check them out!

Italia 1- Colosseo & Trevi
Italia 2- Angels & Demons
Italia 3- Pt 1: Vaticano
Italia 3- Pt 2: Club Crawl
Italia 4- Toscana Tour
Italia 5- Accademia & Uffizi
Italia 6- Veneziamore
Italia 7- Verona
Italia 8- Milano
Italia 9- Cinque Terre
Italia 10- Ciao Roma!


2 Comments so far
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Sounds lovely! And fun! Although it must have been sad to think that you were getting close to the end of the trip :(.

Comment by slightlyignorant

This sounds like such a great trip! I’ve always wanted to go there and now I want to go even more haha. :)

Comment by Melissa

Sing to me!

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