Monday, 10 January 2011

The Bois Do Bologna, and Other Terrible Puns About Italy

This is about the first time I've had wifi since Vienna, save for the random spurts of connectivity that I've been able to hijack on my iPod to update the NYT Crosswords app so I have something to do on planes, trains, and buses besides re-read the one Nadine Gordimer novel I brought with me and become clinically depressed. Over the past two weeks, we've left Vienna for Budapest, and then flown to Italy to trek from Bologna to Florence to Pisa and then to the Cinque Terre tomorrow. It was freezing, but Budapest was tremendous - David and I spent two days there wandering around the city and going to the baths before Emma joined us, when we tackled Castle Hill and ate ridiculously well. (My favorite dish was what appeared to be an entire chicken encrusted in fried cornflakes, served on a bed of inexplicably green couscous. I thought it was awesome, and David thought it was gross, which is a reversal of how these things normally work.) After that, the three of us flew to Bologna and did all of the usual stuff in Bologna, most of which I did seven years ago and promptly forgot until I returned. Emma had to fly back to London to start classes, but David and I made it to Florence for two days, where we rented an apartment from this woman who a) thought we were minors and b) very clearly expected that we would burn down her apartment. (She had nothing to worry about, since our wildest night involved lying around the apartment drinking chianti and watching a BBC special on electric cars.) I expected Pisa to be the worst part of our trip because I booked us a double room in a hostel for 20 euros a night and we really had no idea why we were going to Pisa except that it had cheap flights to Malta, except that we randomly got upgraded to a boutique hotel and I just had a mushroom pizza that is literally the best pizza I've ever had in my life. It's also getting warmer as we head south, meaning that we have stopped piling on layers and trudging through snow and have started sitting outside without coats drinking wine at noon. Win!

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