Posts tagged Sea

Death by Olive

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A seahorse fountain in the square

We are always interested in trying new foods and Ascoli Piceno had something unique on offer – olives stuffed with veal and then deep fried. A cardiologist’s worst nightmare but a delight for tourists’ tummies! This town in the Le Marche region of Italy has plenty of interesting sights, beautiful squares and pretty architecture. Its tourist appeal is readily evident with the numerous American and English voices that can be heard echoing off the Roman monuments.

A quick descent out of the mountainous region of Monti Sibillini National Park lead us to the Adriatic sea. Beautiful blue skies and abundant sunshine, combined with a powder blue sea should result in hordes of sun worshippers … or this is what we thought. The only sight that met us on the beach in Porto d’Ascoli were endless rows of sun loungers and parasols. It looked like a holiday ghost town. If only the English knew about this September paradise. I’m sure many would love a cheap holiday in the Italian ‘off’ season.  We eventually located a wild camping spot right next to the sea, and were rewarded with a pretty sunrise the following morning.

The rising sun looked like a nuclear bomb

La España

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The days were sticky and hot (I have since been told that Europe was immersed in a heat wave) so we did our best to awaken early and make the most of the day, before the heat could make us too irritable.  Today we retrieved the bikes from the bike rack (it has been a while) and cycled along an undulating coastal path.  The sea was stunning, oscillating from aquamarine to deep blue and back again.  A quick dip cooled us down so we could ride back to camp. The rocks here almost look like petrified wood.

El Porto De La Selva boasts restaurants designed by Dali and a statue of liberty with two flames, showing up those proud New Yorkers. We saw an odd sign that seemed to say that kids playing football in the street have priority over cars. Traffic must be slow here.

Football final night saw us venture into town early to ensure we had good seats.  Every eatery was clearly trying to cash in on the event. At our chosen venue the owners’ home television system was mounted onto two very rickety tables to ensure that everyone could see.   Early on it was clear that the satellite connection was intermittent (the picture kept warping like a bad acid trip) and we were switched over to terrestrial, with accompanying Spanish dialogue.   Our corner was mostly orange and a lot of the Frenchies around us were secretly supporting the Dutch.  There was much betting on the final result, but none of us could predict what finally happened!  Viva L’España!

The celebrations were, of course, quite intense with hooters and fireworks going on for hours. What a way to spend our final night in Spain. Tomorrow we leave for France.

What we’ll miss about Spain:

  • saying “Ola”
  • paella, choritzo and sangria, mmmm
  • a constant supply of sunshine
  • the low cost of living

What we won’t miss:

  • the crazy driving, especially on the narrow mountain roads
  • being baked at mid-30s temperatures
  • TomTom’s appalling service in Spain
  • the often grumpy, surly attitude of the Spanish

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