Thursday, November 14, 2013

Mediterranean Cruise Pics Part Two: Livorno And Lucca

It was very windy on our first day in Leghorn, or Livorno as the locals call it, and we spent much of our time in a cafe with Internet available for the price of a cup of coffee or a glass of wine.

On the second day two other couples from our shipboard trivia team and we traveled together to Lucca, a place we've longed to return to, ever since staying there with Greg and June a few years ago.

We hired a taxi among the six of us, a little bit of a splurge compared to the train but much quicker and more comfortable. Most important, our driver was skillful and friendly, dropping us off in the Old Town and picking us up as promised at 3:00 p.m. for the 40-minute drive back to the ship.

Sad to say, Buca di Sant'Antonio, one of our favorite restaurants of all time, was closed for lunch Monday. Maybe it's best to have our memories. A joint called Trattoria da Sergio proved to be a worthy and reasonably priced substitute. 

Antonio, our taxi driver, points the ladies in the right direction as the men wait respectfully in the background.
We wander around, making sure to stop at the birthplace of our favorite opera composer, Giacomo Puccini. We wonder if the cigarette his statue's right hand is holding casually would be removed in certain "politically correct" locales.

So many views on this uncrowded Monday...

We document the sad moment when we realize our favorite restaurant is chiuso...
We console ourselves with more sightseeing. Yes, that includes food in window displays - we haven't eaten in three or four hours, poor babies...

We wander some more...

Some modern statues were scattered among the more ancient sights.

Our gazes keep returning to the windows of food emporiums - guess we're getting hungry.
Time to be brave and savor the non-edible scenery...

 Time for another exercise in group mapreading...
We head ourselves toward food and eventually find Sergio.

 Well fed, we casually stroll back toward Napoleon Square, where Antonio is ready to drive us back from the ship. From left to right below: Kathy, Ralph and Mary Anne from Las Vegas, Hilda and Ron from Spain via the U.K., a most congenial group with whom to share a day in Lucca.

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