Trip Start Sep 04, 2008
19Trip End Oct 08, 2008
Finally, into the northern Italian Lakes, the trip up from Florence was not as slow as we were told but Dee missed half of the scenery, had her hands over her eyes for fear of the tunnels, turns and speeds on the expressway (130 to 145 km). I wanted to see Lake Iseo and into Sarnico where the Riva boat factory is . However, decided to spend the night in Salo. No place to park or get a hotel, in the first place we wanted . After getting lost ,yes again :) finally found an Info site and we booked a gorgeous palace like place on the hill overlooking the Lake Garda in Gardone Riviera . What another jewel in the rough. The hotel sent us up the hill 5 minutes 300 meters walk to restaurants . Once again we fell for this. WE walked up about 1,000 steps and then went round and round up down . Dan tried to get me to go up a private gate that had a big barking dog sign ( not on my life) Finally found the square
The walk down was a bit easier see pics. Back at the Hotel we met the owner and his dog
Erie, Italian sheep dog, sat and talked to his grand daughter Katia. He could have walked out of Gentlemans Q a typical Italian autocrat and very polite. The views of the lake are gorgeous, see pics.
Dan has a scare at check out his Visa wouldn't work, but all is now well.
Next morning on the Lake Iseo
in St. Moritz but she said they don't offer that service (all previous hotels gladly offer to book ahead). The Lake is beautiful. They also had a Farrari club expo in front of the Hotel made for nice eye candy. On the way out I wanted to stop at the Riva Boat Factory and possibly tour. The girl at the front desk made a weak attempt to arrange it but she finally gave up and handed the phone to me, saying she speaks English. In talking to the reception at Riva she offered me hospitality but no tour so we went to see what we could. Upon arrival I was introduced to a nice young sales agent who took me around the grounds and factory but not inside. He explained that they were in final prep for the Fort Lauderdale boat show and tight security was in place. Not a door or window was open
and said most production was stopped until they ship the new boats for the show. Anyway he gave me a nice brochure (actually a hard cover book) and we said good by.
By the way he told me they charter a freighter to deliver the boats to Lauderdale with a team of sales, prep and tech people (38)
On to Lake Como, again a short drive, 2 hours, as we came into the actual town it was a lot larger and more gracious than we thought, but beautiful just the same. The shore line was gorgeous. I kept checking my cell phone to see if George (Clooney) had called with a dinner invitation, but he must not have heard we were in town. Without a confirmed reservation and considering the traffic we decided to just head straight to St. Moritz, Switzerland.
Random Thoughts of Italy
Bathrooms: They might not have decent towels, soap or kleenex etc but by God they have a bidet and a towel warmer. The towel warmer is great for drying socks and underwear LOL. I was going to shave my legs in the bidet but thought how that might look to the maid. What ever you do don't drop the soap, you usually will not have enough room to pick it up :)
Hotel rooms, No clocks, pen, paper or A/C but they having matching real quilts and drapes.
The Italians do not multitask
Bicycles and high heels or suits are the norm along with winding, curvy ,scary roads.
Church bells , Church bells people exist for the church. Nothing open on Sundays.
And finally they all drive like mad men. Passing on curves , blowing horns, and riding 2 in a lane meant for 1. My foot has worn out from pressing the brake on the passenger side not to mention she remolded the plastic in the dashboard.
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