October 18, 2017 – Wednesday, Onward to Bologna!
The most difficult part of the day was getting our suitcases packed tightly with all of the purchases we have made, and then moving them down the elevator to the van. Once that was done, our last breakfast was eaten in the common room, and we said our good-byes to Monica and her staff at Hotel L’Aretino, we were “on the road again”!
Our first stop was at an ongoing architectural dig, Komainu, where Etruscan artifacts and foundations have been revealed in recent years. The Etruscans lived here 2000 years before Christ with an advanced society that is surprising, as revealed by the artifacts. They were eventually conquered or absorbed by the Romans. Many advances credited to the Romans were actually developed by the Etruscans.
After a brief visit in this location, we moved on towards Bologna. Once there, we settled into Hotel Novecento – a beautifully decorated venue with art surrounding us, and delicious food choices always available for snacking and resting. One saying about Bologna is “la gross (the fat) é la dotta (the learned) e la russo (the red)”- the fat because of the food, the learned because it has the oldest university in Europe and the red because it was associated with communism for decades. We spent the late afternoon and early evening, strolling around the Piazza Maggiore and Piazza del Nettuna, checking out the shops and enjoying the architecture and the huge crowds of people who were just enjoying their evening outdoors with their families. We found another excellent place to enjoy a meal – lasagna for me as Beth says lasagna in Bologna is an essential taste.
San Petronia Basilica, the sixth largest church in Europe, is impressive in its distinctive style difference to other large churches we have seen. The façade has been described as a plowed field, and that is quite true, but it is still very impressive. We wandered about this huge piazza that has served as the gathering place and market for centuries.
We enjoyed an evening meal at Trattoria – Pizzeria La Mela where I enjoyed the lasagna.