|Yay! We finally found a seat|
|Nana had the task of looking after all this...while the others hunted for food.|
|Grandpa in the meantime, had already made friends with the family at the table nearby, chatting and playing cards. He found out that they lived at Pymble. Small world!|
|The very fast train that would take us to Bologna|
Our fast train to Bologna was quite nice. The seats were reasonably comfortable and there was a decent amount of space for luggage. The 1.5 hour journey went by very quickly. My DSLR came out to take 2 photos and retired into the safety of its home thereafter because of the rain. The trusty iphone took over whenever I remembered to take a photo...
|Lara happy to get to sit with nana and grandpa|
|The rest of the family content with their idevice of choice|
The weather at Bologna was much the same...cold and wet. We were fortunate to be helped out by several locals who tried very hard to show us where our hotel was despite speaking no English. One led us part of the way and then another showed us the rest! It was a good start to our time here in Bologna. At this point, I was eternally grateful to the famed porticoes of Bologna. The wide covered walkways meant we stayed relatively dry.
Our home for the next two nights was the Hotel Paradise, a budget hotel, but one that earned best value hotel on Tripadvisor. A bit wary initially, I soon understand why that was so. The staff at reception was very friendly. The lift was a reasonable size for Europe and the rooms were clean. The bathrooms were spotless and cleaner than at our apartment in Venice. There was not one bit of mould visible anywhere. Location was fabulous. All for the wonderful price of 65 euros per double which included breakfast!
We dumped our bags and headed for the nearby Via Indipendenza, a major street of Bologna. The shops that we had seen on our walk to our hotel were beckoning. Alas, our quest to purchase a new pair of shoes for Elliot did not eventuate. Instead, we acquired two tops for myself, two tops for Lara, a cardigan for my niece, new Mickey Mouse shoes for Jonah and some food.
|The shops along the porticoes|
|How could we resist all that lovely sweet stuff?!?!|
|The child very happy to get a pair of Mickey Mouse shoes|
|Oops I did it again!|
We were all looking forward to dinner to verify the status of Bologna as Italy's foodie city. Our meal didn't disappoint. Luca, our friendly waiter guided us through the offerings. He made friends very quickly with Grandpa who then promised him to help him when he comes to Sydney in April on a working holiday visa. The food was very good. The proof was in the silence at the table. At the end of the peaceful period, all plates were clean! For dessert, we tried the local specialty Zuppa Inglese, as well as ricotta cheese and cream home made gelato. Awesome!
We cannot wait to explore more of Bologna tomorrow!
|Our dinner venue|
|Menu of the day. Cheap and delicious! Garganelli is a type of pasta. The other choice is tagliattelle with mushrooms and sausages, The second dish is essentially meatballs and peas but the tastiest I've ever had!|
|Zuppa inglese. A dessert made with sponge cake soaked in all sorts of yummy stuff alternating with different types of custard. Mmmmm...|