Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

The dragon and the volcano

We caught the train into London Blackfriars – an interesting name for a station, though I didn’t spot any black friars walking around it. It was pretty quiet, being Sunday morning, and we strolled along the Embankment, which is a rather less interesting name for what is undeniably, an embankment. One of London Transport’s youngest  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

Carn the Blues

We set off into central London from my Uncle Hew’s place, with Hew in tow. We got off the train at Victoria, and strolled around to Buckingham Palace. Buck House is kind of impressive to people who’ve grown up elsewhere in the Commonwealth, and seen it on the telly every time there’s been a royal  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

So long Brum…

Time to leave Birmingham, but first of all we needed to settle the bill. I realised I was a bit lacking in the cash department, so had a quick consultation with "Basil", our host. He apologised for not accepting cards, but gave me directions to a cash machine, and then asked "Are you sure that’s  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

My kind of town

The first B of the B&B, the bed, was very comfy, and we slept well. The second B was a great big artery blocking cholesterol bomb of the full English variety. Thoroughly delicious, and the ladies serving it were marvellously friendly, and promised to call an ambulance if anybody collapsed with heart failure. They had  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

Into the Midlands

We set off from my uncle Hew’s place, not excessively early, but early enough. Our eventual destination this day was Birmingham. All the English people I spoke to wanted to know why on Earth we’d want to go to such a hell-hole, but as it turned out, Birmingham’s reputation for being grey and very nasty  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

So long Roma

Just as we were getting used to Roma, it was time to move on to pastures new. We packed everything, somehow, back into our bags, disposing of whatever stuff we thought was surplus to requirements (those two huge books all about the pasta museum, for a start) and set off for the station. On the  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

Religion and robbers

Today, we got religion, and we got robbed. Well, almost. Well, okay, not even almost. But we did visit Il Vaticano (The Vatican), and we did have a close encounter with a pickpocket. You can hardly go to Roma without visiting the Vatican, so we caught the Metro to the brand spanking new Cipro/Musei Vaticani  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

The coffee, and fascists and the tokens

Another glorious day in Roma (Rome), and our first activity of the day was to head back to Pincio, a little corner of the gigantic park Villa Borghese. We were going to meet L’s Italian teacher Giuseppe, who when he’s not in Melbourne teaching Aussies how to speak Italian, is in Roma being a Roman.  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

It’s a small world

After a quick stop-off by the Colloseo to exchange the el-cheapo t-shirt L had bought for one that didn’t have a hole in it (there’s a tip for any of you wandering off to Roma – check the merchandise before you walk away), we wandered up Via Del Circo Massimo, enjoying the impressive view of  ... [More]

Categories
Europe 1999 🇮🇹🇬🇧🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

Exercising democratic rights

Today, we had one simple mission: To cast a vote. The Victorian state election was on Saturday, and we’d decided that rather than vote at the airport on our way out of Australia, we’d explore Roma and find the local Australian Consulate and exercise our democratic rights there. So we set out to find it,  ... [More]