One of the things that you have to accept when traveling with certain physical disabilities is that plans will change. For the most part, I think we have done this gracefully, and are just really happy to be here on vacation in Bella Italia.
Our original plan for the last day in Bologna was to take public transportation to the Basilica di San Luca, in part to see the Basilica and in part to see the views of Bologna from high on top. We had already acknowledged that walking even part of the 666 porticoes were not an option. We also planned to have lunch at the renowned Meloncello.
Plans change; we decide that even the last part of the walk up to the church will be too demanding for David's knee. We are going to return to Bologna one day and do this properly.
So after breakfast, we have a taxi take us to the Piazza Santo Stefano, to see the quartet of churches, the cloister and the chapels that are part of this 8th-12th century religious complex.It is even more interesting to note that that Santo Stefano was built over the site of an ancient religious sanctuary, a temple of the ancient Egyptian goddess Isis. It is a very interesting walk through the various churches for us.
From there we take the porticoed walk a few blocks north to the mercato, have mid-morning drinks at Eataly, a gelato at Vinche, just a lazy morning in the city.After our rest stop, we walk to find the Museo Ebraico, just a few blocks north of the mercato.It is a small, but charming museo, with relatively few artifacts but an excellent selection of small movies, chronicling Jewish life in Emiliga-Romagna from centuries back until now. And we are admitted free, I think because of David's 'handicap'.
After we leave the museum. David wants to watch the Holland-Denmark match, and we walk to one of the pizzerias from a few nights earlier, where once again we are the crazy Americans alone in a room with Sky international satellite feed. The pizzas are good, there is a liter of the local white frizzante. All this leads to a very long afternoon nap.
Gelato di Venchi
Pizza di Mare
I barely wake in time for dinner, or so it seems. It is a bigger night for the Italians; their team has it's first World Cup match, it is on the local channel we get in our room. David wants to watch at least part of it, so dinner is really late by our standards, we don't leave the room until after 9, Italy is down a goal.
One of the restaurants on the 'lists', one a cut above the excellent casual ones we have been visiting all week, the Camminetto d'Oro, is a mere block from our hotel. There are full tables outside, but we dine inside tonight, one of only three couples in the place, but it is a Monday night and Italy soccer is on tv. The menu is small too, but has a tasting menu of Emilia-Romagna dishes, and several a la carte choices. It is late, and I am still pretty full from the lunch pizza. We share a salad of julienned zucchini, apple slices and goat cheese, then David has a pasta with lemon zest, and I have a grilled branzino, both excellent. We share a dolci; it's called the chocolate box and turns out to be a quartet of small glasses with different chocolate treats. I taste nutella in one.
And that is our last day in Bologna. In the morning we will pack, and pick up a car for the rest of our trip, heading to Alba, with a stop back in Parma - someone left a pair of shoes, large black ones, at the Ag. Leoni. There is a forecast for rain as well. We have really enjoyed Bologna; our stay at the Hotel Paradise, while not luxurious, has been very comfortable - the staff gets great marks for service. But it is time to go.