December 2006 - Italy ,


Italy | Artemis Wine for New Years Eve

December 31, 2006

Buon giorno Went to 10:00 mass and enjoyed a nice sunny walk. We went out to see the work they're doing on the breakwall. Italians are into fireworks and you hear them going off all day. We grilled a steak and had a bottle of "Artemis" wine from my brother Tom and Margaret and Elizabeth. I found hidden in the linen cupboard. Sorry Mike I thought you drank it when really Judy and I hid it back in New York! :-> We talked to some family on Skype (our Skype name is artemisketch) but we still have 45 minutes to midnight I'm not sure we'll make it unless the Italians wake us with fireworks. Happy New Year! We love and miss you all and we look forward to seeing you in a few weeks. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 30, 2006

Buon giorno We're back to reality, daily living in Nettuno. We walked the beach on yet another beautiful sunny day. We went to the bigger grocery store about a mile away. Then we went up to visit our friendly meat markets, vegetable/fruit markets and bakery. We had a lot of shopping to do as we were gone for three days and the next two are holidays with the New Year. We lazed around the boat the rest of the afternoon. Then we started Skype and we were on line for three hours calling people. I made spinach/cheese ravioli with hot sausage, mushrooms and a wine white sauce for dinner. Buon Anno! Happy New Year Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

Italy | Sorrento

Italy | Sorrento | Church of San Antonio

December 29, 2006

Buon giorno, Yet another beautiful, sunny day in Sorrento. We had another yummy breakfast much like yesterdays, except today Annamaria added a prosciutto and cheese pie to the feast. We walked around town taking pictures and shopping. We visited the Church of San Antonio famed for his healing powers. The back of this monument is worn from the touching of the pilgrims to the shrine. We stopped at a lovely bakery and picked up lunch to eat later on the train. The pannei sandwiches had prosciutto, lettuce, fresh basil and olives. Then we chose two chocolate cannoli for dessert. We caught the 12:00 train to Naples. We had time to find a sunny spot for lunch and then walk for two hours. We found the Cathedral (Duamo) but it was closed until 4:30 :-( We took the Euro Star back to Rome at 3:30 just missing the 5:09 train to Nettuno. We caught the 6:09 arriving back at the marina and Artemis around 7:20. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 28, 2006

Buon giorno from Sorrento Our B & B was very cold. The heat in the building only comes on between 5 PM and 11 PM each day. Our guide to the B & B had forgotten to give us the remote and explain the air conditioner had reverse air heat. Oh well we were much warmer on day two. Our breakfast was served in our bedroom. It was quite delightful, cafe latte, raisin/candied fruit bread, toast, hard boiled eggs, cereal, yogurt, and fresh fruit. We left for Pompeii around 9:00 and spent 5 and half hours exploring the ruins. It was another sunny beautiful day so it was quite enjoyable. Al and I had seen the Pompeii artifacts exhibit in Chicago last year so today we explored where they had originated from.

Italy | Pompeii

Italy | Pompeii

Italy | Pompeii

Italy | Pompeii

Pompeii was under seven meters (about 23 ft) of debris. The archaeologists over the years definitely had their work cut out for them. Poisonous gases and the ash suffocated the in habitants of Pompeii as they tried to escape or hide in their homes. Many paintings and mosaics are still in the ruins of the buildi ngs but most of the original sculptures and artifacts are at a museum in Naples. We did find a sculpture of "Artemis" in the Temple of Apollo. We headed back to Sorrento about 3:30. Once again we had a day of walking our "little toesies" off. We picked up a bottle of wine and some Peroni and headed to our room to rest. We bought some mozzarella di bufala and crackers for a snack.

Italy | Sorrento | Jazz Quartet

Around 7 we went out for the evening. What fun!! We ran into a wonderful jazz quartet dressed in tails, spats and Charlie Chaplin type derbies. They were quite a show as they played with the crowd on the street. For example: a young couple walked by and they followed behind them playing "Here Comes the Bride". They cleared a path down the street playing royal Queen of England type of music, for a very regal looking woman in her mink coat. Great entertainment and excellent musicians. We followed them around for over a half an hour. We expected a hat to be passed but that's not what they were about. ( Very often in Italy adults, teenagers and even young children play accordions, horns, drums very poorly in public places or trains and then ask for money. Sometimes they simply walk through the train or down the street asking for money) It was quite refreshing to see someone truly enjoying themselves and with a talent entertaining the public. Naples and the surrounding area is the home of the pizza. Great pizza with mozzarella at Da Gigino's. Most times we get pizza it doesn't have cheese on it. We were serenaded at our table with guitar and Italian songs by a lovely mellow tenor. It was our night for good entertainment :-> and Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

Italy | Sorrento

December 27, 2006

Buon giorno from Sorrento We caught the early train to Rome and made our 9:45 connection to Naples. It was a beautiful panoramic train ride through the mountains and along the coast. There were large agricultural areas and we saw water buffalo. People eat buffalo as well as use their milk mixed with cows milk to make mozzarella. Upon our arrival in Naples an older gentleman latched on to us asking if we were going to Pompeii or Sorrento. We answered Sorrento and he waved us to follow him quickly. He hurried us through the train station and construction. No worry he says showing us the emblem on his shirt I work for the trains. You watch your pockets he says. Eventually he brought us to the ticket counter to buy tickets to Sorrento. Then he grabbed our luggage and led us quickly to the other station to make our connection. He explained our train left at 12:10 not this train, not the next but three. Then Al started to give him something for his help and he said 20 Euro's is good and took it from Al's ha nd. I guess live and learn is the way of travelers. We ate our sandwiches while waiting for the train.

It was another beautiful train ride through mountains and along the Bay of Naples. After about an hour we arrived in the most picturesque little town Sorrento. Shops, shops, everywhere. It makes you wonder how they all can stay in business. Many sell the local specialties, lace, inlaid wood art, ceramics, lemoncelo, olive oil... to name a few. We walked through Piazza de Tosso and Piazza San Antonio to find our B & B contact person Enza Coppola at her ceramic shop. She greeted us with Christmas cookies her sister had made and pictures. Her son has an Italian Ceramic shop on Superior Street in Duluth, MN. Our B & B was in an excellent location, a block above Piazza Tasso. It was very clean in a newer building with a deck but no view. We walked through town finding many panoramic views. Just like pictures we've seen :->

Italy | Sorrento | harbor

We walked to Marina Piccola, Marina San Francesco and Marina Grande. Marina Piccola is really the only marina Artemis could possibly come into. We visited several shops watching family make inlaid wood products. We went to our B & B to rest and enjoy a bottle of wine and Peroni. Sorrento at night is just as lovely as Sorrento in the daylight hours, especially during the Christmas season. The streets, shops, churches, shrubs and trees are all lit for the holidays. We found the Cathedral of Sorrento and were in awe of the architecture, marble, paintings... They had an entire Bethlehem Nativity scene with houses, shops, streets, people...

Italy | Sorrento| Ristorante "La Favorita" O'Parrucchianoly

Italy | Sorrento

We had an excellent four course meal at Ristorante "La Favorita" O'Parrucchiano. The setting was lovely...three tiers of setting, one outside in a vine covered courtyard. Each table had poinsettias, the trees and plants had lights and red bows, very festive. We had calamari au gratin (not cheese) for an antipasta, Al had canneloni and I had mozzarella stuffed rigatoni. For our main course I had filet with a peppercorn sauce and Al was quite jealous. I did share and is veal was good too. For dessert we had a chocolate torte (very dry) and sfogliatelle which was quite good. The walk back to the hotel was like a fairy tale. The Christmas lights in Piazza Tasso were spectacular. Most buildings had lights and the shrubs and awning were lit too. But most beautiful was the 50 ft. artificial pine tree they had lit. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 26, 2006

Buon giorno, What a lazy day. We got walked out yesterday. We caught up on our emails and cleaned house. But that's about it. We talked on SKYPE to Sally's Dad and sister Maggie, sister Katie, Grandma and Grandpa Pribyl, and Sally's brother Tom briefly until the internet connection got bad. Skype is great except when we have a poor wireless connection. It's always the problem from our end. We plan to get an antennae that should enhance our reception when we're in the states. Lots of people have the day off today and families are walking through the marina. There was a flea market uptown. People are still buying gifts as Jan. 6 Epiphany is a big celebration here. I made a seafood pasta for dinner tonight. It was a tomato/pesto/wine base with shrimp, clams, and octopus. Hmmm it was quite good. It's fun to just throw things into a pot and see what we get. We leave tomorrow for Naples, Pompeii and Sorrento. We'll take an early train to Rome and then on to Naples and Sorrento. We have a Bed an d Breakfast in central Sorrento. On Thursday we plan to take the train to Pompeii and visit the ruins. We'll spend the night in Sorrento again then return to Rome/Nettuno on Friday. I'll update my log when I get back. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

Italy |Rome | St. Peter's Square | Pope Benedicts Christmas Blessing

Italy | Rome| St. Peter's Basilica | Swiss Guard

December 25, 2006

Buon giorno, Buon Natale, Merry Christmas! Al an I slept in this morning. We had fruit, juice and granola bars in the room. We packed up and left the B & B about 10:30 to find coffee. We found a Ciocoleteria and had caffe latte and an apple filled croissant. We met a family from Houston Texas and a girl from Ely MN. We talked and walked together to the Vatican for Pope Benedict's special Christmas Blessing. There had to be more than 5000 people in St. Peter's Square. Again we found a spot near the front. It was sunny and 65 degrees in St. Peter's Square. The Swiss Guard band and I'm not sure who else paraded into St. Peter's Square and stood on the steps below the window where the Pope gave his blessing. There were at least six different uniforms and two different bands. Not sure who they all were. We decided to walk to Termini station as it was such a beautiful day. We stopped in Piazza Novana for lunch. We had a nice sunny table. We enjoyed a carafe of wine, tortellini with prosciutt o (ham)/cheese and fettucini bolognese (meat sauce). We caught the 4:00 train back to Nettuno. After such a big lunch at 2:00 we decided to have a light dinner. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

Italy | Rome | Castello di Sant Angelo | View of St. Peter's Basilica from rooftop

Italy | Rome | Castello di Sant Angelo | St. Michael

Italy | Rome | Castello di Sant Angelo | view of Rome

December 24, 2006

Buon giorno

We took the train into Rome and found our B & B near St. Peters. It was in a lovely old building and we had a little kitchen. Thank goodness as we found out later in the day all of the restaurants in the area closed at 5:00 for Christmas Eve. We found a take out place that was closing and we picked up an assortment of things to eat for our Christmas Eve dinner. Earlier in the day we decided to do a tour of Castello di Sant Angelo. We had walked by many times but never took the time to go inside. This was Mausoleum of Hadrian.

After dinner we bundled up and took a blanket with us to St. Peter's Square for Midnight mass. Tickets to be inside were gone months in advance so we happily stood in the front row on the square watching mass on the Big Screens. By 2:00 AM it was extremely cold well below freezing. Once our feet thawed a bit we had a happy but quick walk back to our B& B.

December 23, 2006

Buon giorno, What a fun day. We got SKYPE to work via our son Patrick. We then talked to Patrick for over an hour for free. We each have computer cameras so we could see each other. The image and sound varied with the connections we had but overall it was great. Later he called back and we saw Nicci, Nicci's belly, and 3D ultrasound pictures of Josie our grand daughter. We made a few other calls and before we knew it supper was way overdue. We grilled and ate around 8:30 (only 1:30 MN time). We picked up groceries for Christmas and our train tickets for upcoming travel. Al and I will go to Rome tomorrow Christmas Eve for Midnight mass at the Vatican. We have a Bed and Breakfast near the Vatican and will return to the boat in Nettuno Christmas afternoon. Then we take the train to Sorrento for two nights, three days Dec. 27. Time has gotten away from me tonight and I need to finish packing as we're catching the 8:32 train to Rome tomorrow. Merry Christmas to all Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 22, 2006

Buon giorno, Beautiful morning in Nettuno. Al put a final coat of varnish on the steps :-> Christmas came early aboard the Artemis. Our travel agent found us a Bed and Breakfast for two nights in Sorrento. So Al and I are taking the train to Naples then to Sorrento Dec. 27. We'll visit Pompeii and Sorrento and return to Nettuno December 29. We walked the beach to the east of the marina today for a couple of hours. It's fun just to be outside walking. We downloaded "Skype" an internet telephone service. We can call land phones for 2 cents a minute! The calls are free from Skype to Skype customers. We had a trial 5 minutes but now we're trying to figure out home to buy more minutes. They ask for a Visa password which we don't have :-( Once we get that figured out it'll be fun to call people from the boat. If anyone is interested in getting Skype just go online. It was easy to register. Al's been having fun surfing his favorite marine websites. When we're in an internet cafe we usually d on't take the time to do that. We feel connected to the world again. We can check news, weather... Al even went on Google Earth to fly over our house in Burnsville. Beautiful evening so we're grilling. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 21, 2006

Buon giorno, We put all the hardware back on the hatches and put up the screens. Another big job completed. We walked around town and visited the internet. Had pizza for lunch and picked up some groceries at Pan and meat at our butcher market. Really not a lot going on. We discovered a lovely Nativity scene set into the hillside by the marina. It's behind a gate with water rushing out of the hill behind the Nativity scene. We plan to go back later to see it lit at night. I made a pot of beef soup while Al played with the internet. Justin finally made contact with the internet company here in Nettuno. We tried with no success while he was visiting here so he forwarded all the information home to try there. Voila we are now hooked up to the internet on our boat in the marina. They gave us 15 days free for the inconvenience. Ciao

Love Sally and Al

December 20, 2006

Buon giorno, We put the final coats of varnish on the hatches and screens :-> We have one or two more to go on the steps. I washed clothes by hand and hung them to dry on the lifelines. It was a beautiful, sunny day in high 60's so everything dried before sunset! We plan to grill again tonight. So we're just enjoying our music and the beautiful evening. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 19, 2006

Buon giorno, We got going early this morning. Al put a coat of varnish on the steps and we went up to take showers. We went to visit a travel agent. We're trying to arrange a trip to Naples, Sorrento and maybe Capri sometime before we come home. Then we stopped for some pizza and decided to walk up to Anzio. It was beautiful walking along the beach. We had to leave the beach and go by road for a short part of the trip. But for the most part we were alone on the two mile stretch to Anzio. We visited a couple of chandeliers and did some window shopping. Before leaving town for Nettuno we just had to stop for a cono gelato (ice cream cone). We had a nice walk back again along the beach. It's a good thing we were up and moving early because the rain moved in about 3:30 and we were back at the boat. We had a cozy afternoon reading our cruising guides and travel brochures. I put some chicken cacciatore on to simmer and we enjoyed our Christmas carols. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 18, 2006

Buon giorno, Rainy during the night but cleared up into a nice day mid morning. The stereo quit last night while playing Christmas carols. So Al took everything apart...what a mess of wires. He checked all the connections and sprayed with electrical cleaner but no luck. We decided the 1986 tuner was shot. Can't be without Christmas music so we went to the shopping mall and bought a portable CD player. Works great and we are happily listening to our music again this evening. Al put another coat of varnish on the steps and they're looking great. Only 4 or 5 more coats to go :-> The hatches still aren't dry enough to sand so we're holding off on the top coat. Beautiful evening so planning to grill again. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 17, 2006

Buon giorno, It was too cloudy and damp feeling today so we decided to let the hatches dry for another day or so before putting on the top coat. So after mass and brunch we started on the interior steps. We got them all sanded, cleaned and a first coat of varnish on. We went up to the internet and then called the boys. We get emails but it's just nice hearing their voices :-) We came back to the boat and put on Christmas carols and I put stuffed green (yellow)peppers into the oven to back while we enjoy our carols. Now it feels like Christmas. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 16, 2006

Buon giorno, We put the final two coats of Rapid Coat Epithane on the screens, hatches, and seat backs today. Tomorrow we can put one layer of top coat. It has a longer wait time between coats. We were just getting started this morning when four very official looking, uniformed men arrived at our boat and asked for our ships papers and passports. They stood up in the parking lot for a good 20 minutes talking and looking at our papers. We weren't quite sure who they were and if something was wrong... There is talk of a Schenig law that no one in the EU has been enforcing. It states that non EU people can only be in a group of EU countries for three months and then must leave for a period of time. It's all quite an obscure law and we hadn't heard of anyone being challenged. Was this our day? No it turns out they were the Italian customs agents checking our papers and boat documents. They smiled, handed us our papers back and wished us a Happy Holiday :-> We had the boat hatches off and it looked like it could rain so Al stayed with the boat and I went to the markets all by myself. (the first time since leaving NY) I was so proud of myself, I can still do this task on my own. We did have to go back later to the meat market as it was closed. It's so hard to get use to everything being closed between 1:30 and 4:30 each day. The big grocery stores stay open and the restaurants but everything else shuts down. It never rained and cleared up into a nice evening so we grilled pork chops. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 15, 2006

Buon giorno, Happy Birthday Grandpa Fraher. Daddy asked if we were going stir crazy in the small space? Not at all. I explained that if we were at home we'd be on the couch in front of the fireplace and TV (we have main salon with heater and TV moniter) I'd use the kitchen to make dinner at home. (I have the galley where Al and I can continue our conversation) We have our bedroom and bathroom. If it's nice at home we would have lunch out on the deck (plenty of deck here as a matter of fact we did have lunch on the deck today) No our space is perfect, cozy and I don't feel it was too crowded when Bob, Val, and Justin were here. We continued the varnishing project today. Two coats done today but we have another two plus top coat to go. It's a rigatoni night and a nice bottle of chianti. I didn't think that I like chianti. Remember to buy a bottle with the rooster on the label and you can't go wrong. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 14, 2006

Buon giorno, Busy busy day. We took off all the hatches and screens to refinish the insides. I polished all the chrome hardware while Al sanded screens. We got everything sanded, washed, and bleached. Tomorrow we add the varnish. Hopefully the weather will continue to cooperate. It turned into a beautiful day today. Al put on his coat, took off his coat, put on, took off... The Italian military continues to do bombing exercises almost every other day. Sometimes it sounds so close the boat rattles and the alarm systems on surrounding boats go off. It was a beautiful evening so we grilled steaks, salad, and fresh Italian bread. Yum! Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 13, 2006

Buon giorno, Oh what a beautiful morning...oh what a beautiful day. It's sunny and warm again today. No wind and the moisture is out of the air so it makes a big difference. We could send but didn't receive any emails for 3 days. I began to think everyone had forgotten about us but then we went up to the internet today and checked on our Windlink email. We had 8 emails that had never come through on the boat :-> So I went back to the boat and sent for them and they came through. It could be we've had bad connections of late and we were kicked off the air before we could receive mail? The shop keepers are busy decorating the street in front of their shops for the holidays. They put out red carpets, cover their planters with glittery fabric, add bows, flowers, and Christmas lights. We did run into some Holiday "music" when out shopping the other day. It was a gaudy, skinny Santa Claus, movement activated. It would dance, talk, and sing in English HO HO HO...Up on the Housetop and a few oth er kid songs. Bad... We do have some Christmas CD's so we can listen to our favorites. I can't watch my favorite Christmas movies as they were VHS and I didn't bring them along. I did make a copy of Al's favorite "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" so we'll have to save that for a special night. It's a beautiful evening so we're grilling spada (swordfish) for dinner :-> Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 12, 2006

Buon giorno, We got up early and took the train to Rome. Sunny but colder especially in the shade. We took the metro to Spagne and started our day at the Spanish steps. We visited two beautiful churches one I can't remember the name but other was San Sylvester. We had a picnic lunch by the fountain and obelisk in front of the Pantheon. We went to Piazza Navona and visited their craft fair (much like the street vendors of Florence). We walked along and over the Tiber and visited the shops around St. Peters. We walked our feet off, didn't buy a thing but had fun looking. We caught the 6:00 train back to Nettuno. Picked up our laundry...what a rip off. Laundry is destined to be our one area that we get taken advantage of. We had maybe two loads of laundry and we were charged for three. Then she told us it was 1 load 20 Euros, 1 load 20 Euro, 1 load 20 Euro 60 Euros!! Whoa I told her we paid 15 Euros last time for one load (that was too much)so she says okay 1 load 15 Euro, 1 load 15 Euro, 1 load 15 Euro 45 Euro!(I should have said 10 Euro):-(

Love Sally and Al

December 11, 2006

Buon giorno, It rained throughout the night but cleared up this morning. It was a nice day cloudy but about 60 degrees. Al had to rewire the new bilge pump as it was driving us crazy. It had an automatic sensor to sense the water level in the bilge but it would turn on every 75 seconds:-( So he hooked it up to a float switch. That little boat job took over four hours! My we know how to have fun. It such a nice day we plan to grill tonight. We'll head to Rome tomorrow if it's this nice again tomorrow. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 10, 2006

Buon giorno, It rained again during the night but cleared by morning. We were treated to a mini parade and concert by the Nettuno military band after mass today. They were making some sort of memorial presentation at the plaza above the marina. It seems every few weeks some sort of day is remembered with a wreath and presentation. They wore army fatigues and huge black saucer shaped hats tilted to one side with large black plumes (feathers) draping to their shoulder. Quite fancy but not what one might expect to see as a uniform. It rained again so it felt cold like a late October day in Bayfield. The moisture in the air makes 52 degrees seem colder. We went up town to pick up something to make for dinner only to discover the grocery stores are not open in the afternoon on Sundays. Leftover soup sounds good. A mystery to be solved. I was microwaving the soup when suddenly we heard a loud decompressing sound (like aresol can only louder) and a strong ammonia smell. It lasted about 25 seconds. The refrigeration and inverter are working. We can't find anything that may have caused that sound and smell. The after smell was like an overheated radiator smell... Any ideas what may have caused this. Perhaps something in the air conditioner? A puzzle that I'm sure one day will become clear as something won't work :-(

Love Sally and Al

December 9, 2006

Buon giorno, We had a hum-dinger of a storm early this morning. It was good to be on board to know how Artemis handles the movement in the harbor. We had new mooring lines with springs installed and they seem to do well. The boat next to us lost a fender as it came untied from all the friction between boats. The boats continued to rock and roll throughout the day. Al and I ventured off the boat around 11:00 to shop for dinner and get some pizza for lunch from our favorite bakery. We went to the butcher for some stew meat and to the vegetable market for celery and carrots to add to ingredients already on board. After lunch I started the beef soup so it would only need to be warmed at supper time. We provided the evenings entertainment for the Italian men on the dock. Al and I trying to get off the boat to go take showers as it swayed and moved away from the dock. Our boarding plank is a 2 X 6 X 6 board that we searched for in Portugal and carried 3 miles up and down hills back to the boat. Well today a six foot plank had difficulty staying on the dock. The boat would pull away and it would drop into the harbor (of course we have a rope tied to it) and then Al would have to set it up again. He got off. It's all in timing your departure from the boat and I gracefully followed :-> I'm sure those Italian men never expected me to get off of the boat after the plank had fallen into the harbor three times or at least I should have made a fuss of some sort. I had to show them what American women sailors are made of... Our soup smelled heavenly as it simmered and it tasted great too. Plenty of leftovers. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 8, 2006

Buon giorno, We finished installing the bilge pump today. It meant taking half the boat apart to get at the hoses but it's done. Since the bed was ripped apart I changed the sheets so that was a good deal. I started in the V berth on the bilge cleaning. Not much mildew mostly dirt and dust that has gathered over the years. I got as far as mid-ship and Al was in my path so I was done for the day. We walked out to see the work on the breakwall. Hard to tell what they are doing. We've heard they plan to add another 150 slips. Walked uptown for a bit. Everything was closed down in the afternoon for the Holy Day. Too windy to grill so we made omelets. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 7, 2006

Buon giorno, Well it actually rained today. So we tackled inside boat jobs. Al finished wiring in the European outlet, and the 12 volt outlet and 12 volt refrigerator switches into the electrical panel. Then we started installing the new bilge pump and hose. What a job. It took all afternoon and we're still not done. He replaced the old wiring and hose both were quite bad. The hose had holes in it so it wasn't very efficient. The wiring goes bad in the saltwater. He was disappointed as he was not able to find any tinned wire. Evidentially they don't use it here. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 6, 2006

Buon giorno, 'Twas a cloudy, colder day today in the 50's. The wind made it seem colder. We went shopping and Al bought a sweater and a couple of long sleeved shirts. I picked up a couple of long sleeved tops too. We've decided against the trip to Assisi unless we rent a car sometime. So we're planning a trip into Rome on Friday. Al did some varnishing and I read Michelangelo. Some days there just isn't much to write about. We must be settling in to normal life :-) Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 5, 2006

Buon giorno, We're back to another clear sunny day today. Claudio says it is unseasonably warm for December. But never as cold as Roma. :-) We took advantage of the sunshine and walked. We found a shopping mall with a large grocery store, home store, electronics store, sporting goods, shoe store. We were going to walk further and find the other vineyard in Nettuno Cantine Divina Provoidenza but realized it would be closed for another hour so we walked back toward Nettuno. Al put on another coat of varnish on the companion way this morning and he found some stain he's going to try on the steps. We emailed Joan (travel agent in Duluth) and asked her about hotels or B & B's in Assisi. We want to travel there some time this next week. Tons of leftovers so Sally's off kitchen duty tonight. After dinner we took a walk up town and had a gelatie :-> Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 4, 2006

Buon giorno, Cloudy day but no rain so Al put Sikkens on the hatches and varnish on the companion way. We took the jib down and folded it into it's bag. Then we tightened all the halyard lines, took off the boom vang, and tidied all the lines for winter. We don't want anything clanging or chafing while we are gone to the states. It's amazing how time consuming boat jobs are. The marina has broken a 30 foot wide hole through the breakwall today. They've been working on it for over a week. They appear to be adding boulders outside the wall...hope they fill that hole before the weather changes. We bought new hose and wire to install the new bilge pump we brought from home. That'll be another day's project. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 3, 2006

Buon giorno, The weather continues to be lovely. No advent wreath in our church, must not be an Italian custom. America tends to take on the customs of all countries. We walked around town after lunch. No Christmas music playing in the shops but everyone is beginning to decorate. The store windows are festive, people are planting flowers, and putting up lights. Poinsettias and clymitis (can't spell) must endure the chilly nights. We took the stay sail off and will put the jib away tomorrow it the weather continues to be good. Al started sanding the companion way, a job he's wanted to tackle for years. I sneak some reading in now and then. I'm half way through Irving Stone's "Agony and Ecstasy" a biographical historical novel of Michelangelo. I read it over 35 years ago and I'm enjoying it again. It's fun to read when names, places and streets are so familiar. Most of the book has taken place in Florence and Rome. It's interesting to read a perspective of what Michelangelo may have been th inking and what was happening in Italy as he carved his Bacchus, Pieta, David, and the many other works he did. Al is hungering for chicken cacciatore tonight so I'd best get started. It's always best when it can simmer for a while. :-) Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

December 2, 2006

Buon giorno, We woke to another beautiful day. We decided to take a walk around 10:00 and explore southeastern Nettuno as we had never walked that direction before. We walked along the beach basking in the sunshine for about a mile before heading inland. We found some new shops to come back and visit. We walked another mile or so up to one of Nettuno's vineyards Cantina Bacco. We bought a 5 liter jug which they filled with Rosso di Bacco (1.47 Euro's a liter :->) and a bottle of Scoglio D'Orlando a Nettuno Cacchione to try (3.29). They gave us a sample at the vineyard to try and we liked it so now we'll see if we really liked it. It was fun walking through the neighborhoods of this part of town. It was more single family housing with yards, gardens, patios... and with all the palm trees I sometimes feel like I'm in Florida. We got back to the boat about 1:00 and had lunch. I wiped down the eyebrow (molding on the cabin top) and Al put on some Sikkens finish. He added another coat of varn ish to the companion way top and to the door. He varnished the cockpit table too. I'm being creative tonight making fettuccini with fresh mushrooms, onions, peppers, garlic, wine, basil pesto/cream, shrimp and sausage for dinner. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

Italy | Nettuno | Artemis |

December 1, 2006

Buon giorno, We're back to day- to- day living with no travel plans or cruises in sight. Al put another coat of varnish on the companion way cover that Mike refinished when he was still with us in Portugal. We received an exciting email from Pat and Nicci today. Yesterday's ultrasound confirmed that Al and I will have a grand daughter in April :-) (Actually we saw our first ultrasound picture when they came to visit us last August in Portugal. They gave grandma a gift It was a golden bookmark that said GRANDMA) Today we took care of our travel plans for January to come home to the states. We'll fly into Chicago on Jan. 11 and out of Minneapolis on March 5. We'll spend time in Chicago, Minneapolis, Maple Lake, and with Sally's Dad in New York. Al bought me my Christmas tree today, a poinsetta. It didn't seem very big but on our salon table it is quite large. I put an artificial one in the head {bathroom). Now I'm ready for Advent. Al wired in and mounted a new switch for the invertor as the old one went bad. The first one he put in was too small and started to melt so had to buy another :-( So goes an ordinary day aboard Artemis. Ciao,

Love Sally and Al

#2006Italy #USA #Italy

Featured Posts