Trip Start Apr 02, 2011
5Trip End Apr 27, 2011
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Where I stayed
Santa Zita Apartment
By the time we get to Lucca not alot of people are left on the train, so when we get off we are not sure which way to go, as signage isn't fantastic in Italy. Eventually, we spot Andrew (Todd Woodbridge), on his bike. Shane, Molly, Lucy and Katy jump in a taxi and head off to the apartment, of course when you want a taxi, there aren't any. After a short wait and chat with Andrew, and discussing how far it is, I suggest we walk. Amy pops her bag on the bike and we head off to the walls of Lucca, about 500m.
Lucca is an amazing town. It is completly surrounded by a wall, that is 4km. What was once built to protect the people of Lucca, now provides a safe environment, not many cars are allowed inside the wall, as streets are narrow, cobbled, and often one way, or perhaps not! Bikes are the go in Lucca, mums take their children to school on the back of bikes, or if old enough they ride their own. It is quite a sight in the morning, to see mums racing around, no one weating helmets, and then again at lunch time picking up. The younger children go to school till lunch time, six days a week, and the older children do the same, but return to school after lunch. There dosen't appear to be any road rules, just free for all, bikes, cars, small trucks, and pedestrians just stroll, and race around, lots of bell ringing.
As we walk, Andrew gives us the run down, and the places to shop and be seen, and the sites to visit. We walk into a small narrow lane way, and from high up on the third floor, popping out of green shutters, I hear ciao, from small excited voices. We are home for the next week.
The Apartment is unbelievable, I feel like I am walking around with a constant grin on my face. Up 20 stairs to the main living area, lounge, couches and TV. Around the fireplace to a huge 10 seater dinning table, to the right a well set out kitchen and small table and behind that a laundry. Off the kitchen, is a beautiful terrace, with a table and shade, pot plants and vines. The Terrace has homes to the right, where little Italian ladies quickly retreat behind shutters. Washing hangs from the lines, which are on a pully system. I know it's crazy but I can't wait to wash and hang the clothes out.
Back inside, and off the Dinning area is a passage that leads to the first bathroom, HUGE, similar in size to the one at home with bath shower, toilet, and sink, beautiful and most importantly clean. Back out to the pasage past a walk in robe, down two steps to the master bedroom, and into a light filled room. An enormous space with couch, dressing table, magnificant carved wooden bed, bedside table and reading lamps, views to the street and doors opening to the terrace.
Back to the lounge area, and up four steps and along a passage to a toilet on the left, turn the corner, up 15 steps to a landing. Off to the right a spacious bathroom for the girls, and then Wow! Three fantastic bedrooms. Molly has picked the deluxe suite (while Amy and I were walking). A beautiful quilt on the carved wooden queen size bed, windows that open to the street, next door Lucy and Katy in two single beds, with a glass door that opens to a small balcony, and then to Amy's room, with double bed and green quilt, and again with windows and green shutters opening to the street.
Another set of 15 steps leads to the room, a small area with a chair and views of the roof tops.
I know already we will be sorry to leave Lucca.
Andrew, gives us some info, on things to do, see, the best way to get around, best eating places, coffee, and the closest supermarket.
By this time it is nearly 3, so we head off To find a bite to eat and to get our bearings. When we return to the apartment Katy, Lucy and Molly settle in on the couches and Amy and I head out again, to explore further.
We return about 6, and then all head out again for dinner. We stroll, a bit and then decide on De Leo, Andrew's suggestion. After a bit of table rearranging, they don't seem to have a problem, making people move over, and turning tables around, to amke room for more customers. We order, pasta, chips and Pork ribs for Shane, beer, water and a glass of red. Katy's chips are there in under a minute, closely followed by the ribs and the pasta's a bit slower, I think we wait about five minutes. The meal is fresh, homemade, the atmosphere is buzzing, waiters frantically racing around with meals, screams from the kitchen, plates dropped, we love it!
Home to bed, a very busy day again. Sinking into what seems to be the best bed, I have ever slept in (next to my own), great pillow and doona, I have the best nights sleep, not sure if it is just the bed, or the fact that we have a week in Lucca, so I can afford to completely relax knowing that there is time to explore and no train to catch.