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Tuscany & Umbria in Autumn 1Print
Ted’s first tour was to Tuscany and Umbria, a late summer ramble through the hill towns, restaurants and bars of rural Italy. Avoiding the mass crowds of Florence and somehow missing the leaning tower in Pisa (despite looking)!
And he's off!
Ted enjoyed a relaxing trip finding few English and mainly American tourists for company. He’s a little large to squeeze into hand luggage so he was grateful for the luxury of his own 'seat', though he wasn’t impressed by the teddies EasyJet are using for their advertising campaign – cheap, inferior quality tat! There's no bear like a Harris Tweed bear!
The first stop was to a self catering apartment just outside the city walls at Lucca a city famous for it's music and the birthplace of Puccini. He found there was a plentiful supply of Lavazza coffee for breakfast, just the right size cup for Ted with sweet pastries, that beats porridge with salt any day.
A Walk on the Walls
The great thing about walking round the city walls is being able to peep into the lives of others; Ted spotted this lady having a crafty fag before she did her hair. That was nothing though, compared to the shocking site of washing dangling over the public squares.
Ted's first selfie
Despite having only short arms Ted managed his first ‘selfie’ in Piazza dell’Anfiteatro the place to be seen in Lucca. This fabulous first Century Roman theatre was where tens of thousands were once entertained though now there's a charming assortment of mediaeval houses surrounding bars and restaurants. Maybe a selfie stick will be on his Christmas list for next year!
Heading off on the twisty, tree lined roads there was a brief stop to view the magnificent 13 towers of San Gimignano, it’s hard to imagine that there were once 72 of them.
Ted felt somewhat alarmed in the market place with all of them 'bearing' down on him!
The Chianti countryside
The next stay was in Radda in Chianti right in the centre of the wine growing region, where the Super Tuscan wine originates. Ted went to taste at the beautiful vineyard at Castello D'Albola but there are many places to visit to sample the local produce. Looking over the town terrace over the endless rolling hills was a delighful place for Ted to contemplate the imminent Scottish Independence referrendum.
No longer a resident of the Isle of Harris, Ted wasn’t eligible to vote, but he caught a leaf and took that as a good luck sign that the Union would continue, he’s not a fan of the Euro.
It was there that Ted found himself the perfect ride, his feet would almost touch the floor in this Fiat 500. If only he could persuade the owner to let it go!