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Report 893: Buona Fortuna In Verona, Veneto and Genoa

By Dori from Massachusetts, Summer 2005

Trip Description: August 24- September 8, 2005 Opera and VAlpolicella in Verona, Palladian Villas and Cheese in the Veneto Genoa and Italian Riviera

Destinations: Countries - Italy; Regions/Cities - Liguria, Veneto

Categories: Family/Friends; Vacation Rentals; Art Trip; Beach; Garden Visits; Opera; Sightseeing; Wine Trip; Independent Travel; 2 People

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Page 1 of 17: Too Many Coincidences Cannot be Ignored

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Arena di VErona Opera props Nabucco

Now that I am writing this trip report, I believe that the first seed for our plans was planted about two years prior to our actual vacation. Linda and I have known each other many years – high school and hygiene school together. Life took us our separate ways, but seven years ago we both began working together. Our interests were similar - wine, food, travel and opera. We both had our travel companions until she lost her significant other four years ago. It was then we began day tripping with my husband and one of our trips was to the Wickford Rhode Island Arts Festival.

A wonderful day, looking at all the art and photography. One booth held our attention, wonderful photos of Verona. Casually we said to each other, "Wouldn’t it be wonderful to someday go to the Opera in the Arena di Verona?" We had each been to Italy many times, but never to the Opera in Verona. Later that day we wandered into a gourmet food and cheese shop and found ourselves looking at a certain cheese wrapped in straw and hay; it was called Vento D’Estate and it was from the Veneto Region.

Coincidences kept occurring. A few weeks later I met with my cousin to view his pictures of Italy. He was vacationing but also buying cheese, his specialty , while serving as the maitre’d at L’Espalier, Boston's fabulous restaurant. I mentioned a certain cheese wrapped in straw and hay that I had forgotten about and he said it’s Vento D’estate. Another coincidence.

While attending Providence’s Waterfire we shopped at a wonderful gourmet shop called Venda Ravioli on Atwells Avenue. There it was again Vento D’Estate. Very rich very bovine in taste.

While at Waterfire, the music played before the lighting was the Triumphal March from Aida. This coincidence was not to be ignored.

November 2004, two months after I had returned from three weeks in Italy in the Veneto to see the Partita a Scacchi in Marostica, renting an apartment on a wine estate in Tuscany with my husband and Italian cousins and after reaching 100,000 frequent flyer miles I decided to ask Linda to join me the following year for a trip. We would attend Opera at the Arena di Verona, spend time in the Veneto finding the Vento d’estate cheese, see Palladian Villas and a few days near the ocean; Amalfi was too far away so we decided on Genoa after reading articles submitted to Slow Travel and in a current Gourmet Magazine.

Our trip was planned, after a tortuous wait on the phone to arrange for FF miles. Our final decision was made; our flight plans were circuitous but doable. Boston to Montreal to Frankfurt to Bologna. Return Milan to Frankfurt to Montreal to Boston. So we decided to spend 16 days. August 25 through September 8, 2005.

Opera Tickets and Travel Planning

Definitely wanted to obtain tickets for the opera. So we purchased them online in Jan 2005. Price for both 300 Euro for two of us for two operas. Less than the Met. One night in the unreserved seats for Turandot and one night in Gradinate Numerata in the arena for Aida. Followed advice on Slow Trav written by Dean. Thanks.

Our sources for our travel planning are listed at the end of this report.

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