Pisa with my kid!

December 09, 2012 0 Comments A+ a-

My daughter, Casey and her Navy sailor husband, Matt, moved to Naples, Italy this past summer.  I have been out on a medical leave--I had foot surgery in August--and wanted to see her before I go back to work next week.

Until they found housing, Casey and Matt lived in temporary quarters at the Hotel Agora.  This hotel caters to the military community, and they loved the atmosphere the hotel provides.  Everyone staying there is military, and the hotel has many events for the families: grill night, prom night, men's night, etc. The hotel staff became family.

So, my first day there, I was so happy to meet some of the hotel staff.  We stopped by for a cappuccino to start the day.  Alessio was working in the restaurant--when I walked in with Casey and Matt, I heard a booming Italian-accented, "MA-ma!"  Alessio was walking from behind the bar as he said it, greeted me with the European two-kiss hello, and gave me a "welcome to Naples" hug.  Love him already!

After showing me the gigantic Auchon grocery store (you know how I love those!) and the mall, we picked up some lunch before Matt dropped us off at the Villa Litorno train station.   Casey and I had decided to go to Pisa to see the Leaning Tower and then to go to Giglio Island, to see the Costa Concordia-the cruise ship that struck rocks and sunk last January.

My BFF, Shelby and I have been talking about going to see this cruise ship ever since the accident occurred.  Her schedule and mine haven't really meshed this year, and she was just a little disappointed she wouldn't be able to go with us.

So, I took her with us anyway!  Say hello to Flat Shelby!

Shelby on the train!

It was a long train ride-two hours to Rome, then four hours to Pisa.

On the train window--does it mean "no drinking wine" or "no littering"?

We found our hotel very quickly and easily-the Hotel La Pace.  We loved this place.  Nothing fancy at all, but around $60 for a twin room, with breakfast and Internet.  It was clean, safe and comfortable--we loved it!  The staff was super friendly, and gave us directions to for the 20 minute walk to Pisa, as well as restaurant recommendations.  Pisa was very safe for us to walk around at night.

We walked up this street lined with shops and Christmas market stalls--and made plans to come back the next morning.

We found the Tower fairly easily and were just delighted with how pretty the white building looked against the black night.  I think we appreciated its' beauty more, having seen it first at night: it was stunning!

Of course, Shelby is addicted to the Internet and had to check
her e-mail and Facebook before going to bed!

Of course we posed for the goofy pictures

Doing a little shopping.

Shelby checking out the Pinocchio key chains-he's from that area, you know!

After a great day, it was back to the train station, where we headed to Orbetello and Porto Santo Stefano.

The view from our hotel in Porto Santo Stefano.

Shelby enjoyed the view as well!

We had a terrific dinner of grilled prawns and spaghetti at La Bussola, a block from the hotel.  Then we hunkered down for the night.  We had an early morning ferry to catch to get to Isola di Giglio and the Costa Concordia.