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Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Autogrill

Autogrill Sebino Nord
Many of our pit stops during our long road trips in Italy were at an Autogrill. Although Autogrill is the name of a large catering company in Europe and North America, it has become a proprietary eponym synonymous with all Italian highway rest stops among locals and foreigners alike.

 Autogrill Chianti 

Autogrills are nothing like the rest stops I know in my corner of the world — these are true-blue restaurants! It's kinda like restaurant meets convenience store meets Italian grocer.


The range of breads, pizzas, focaccia, brioche, and croissants in Italy is overwhelming. 
It is a little known fact that over 350 types of bread originate from across Italy.








FUN FACTS
  •  Italy has more rest stops than any other country in Europe.
  •  You only have to drive about 27 km on average from one Autogrill to another. 
  •  There are over 600 Autogrills in Italy.

Friday, March 17, 2023

Fontana di Trevi

Workers cleaning the baroque fountain.

FUN FACT
The coins in the Trevi Fountain have to be cleared daily because of the sheer amount being tossed in.
On average, around 3,000 worth of coins are collected in a day that's over 1 million euros very year! 
In 2001, the mayor decided that the money should be collected for a local charity to put a stop to the frequent attempts by people to steal coins from the fountain. Since then, the loose change that ends up in the fountain has been donated each year to Rome's Catholic charity Caritas.
My Corner of the World

Thursday, March 9, 2023

Gallimaufry#72

Just a gallimaufry of photos 📷
If only we took a moment to look up 
Batu Caves
Batu Caves is one of Malaysia's biggest tourist attractions. It is the site of a Hindu temple and shrine, consisting of a series of caves.
Tourists making the long, challenging climb of 272 steps up to the Batu Caves

Thai lunch
Pad Mama Kee Mao Thale
Khao Pad Sapparod
Pad Grapow
Dawn from my airplane window




We were heading to our restaurant for lunch when something dangling over the power lines above the viaduct caught my eye. When the curious object came into view, I realized that it was a pair of sneakers! Our Italian guide explained that it was an act of shoefiti (shoe + graffiti) and apparently, it is a global phenomenon although I've never seen it in my corner of the world.

There are many theories surrounding this act of shoe-tossing and according to Snopes, suggestions include :
  •  It's the work of gangs marking the boundaries of their territory. 
  •  Bullies take them off defenseless kids, then sling them up out of reach as the ultimate taunt. 
  •  Gang members create an informal memorial at the spot where a friend lost his life. 
  •  Crack dealers festoon wires to advertise their presence in the neighborhood.
  •  The shoes increase wire visibility for low-flying aircraft. 
  •  Overly puffed-up boys who have just lost their virginity or otherwise passed a sexual milestone look to signal the event to others.
  •  Graduating seniors mark this transition in their lives by leaving something of themselves behind;   namely, their shoes.
  •  Kids do it just because it's fun. 👟
Have you seen shoefiti in your corner of the world, and do you know what it means?
My Corner of the World

Thursday, March 2, 2023

Gallimaufry#71

 Just a gallimaufry of photos 📷

Year of the rabbit

Chrysanthemums


Afternoon tea with girlfriends

“Smell the sea, and feel the sky. Let your soul and spirit fly.” — Van Morrison 💗
“Italy is a dream that keeps returning for the rest of your life.” — Akhmatova💗

My Corner of the World

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Gallimaufry#70

 Although Switzerland wasn't originally on our itinerary, our tour leader surprised us with a lunch stop in Lugano en route to Milan.



Foggy, but when the veil was lifted, Lake Lugano was breathtakingly beautiful.








The trees along the promenade looked rather alien.

Save for the ubiquitous Swiss flags, Lugano felt like we were visiting yet another picturesque town in Italy. People were speaking in Italian everywhere around us. The landscape looked Italian. The food tasted Italian! 

Lunch at The Spaghetti Store

Totally Italian, except we had to pay for the meal in Swiss Francs!

I could just sit on one of the many classic Swiss red benches stationed along the waterfont promenade and admire the view all day!

My Corner of the World