Dr. Hoffer's Travel Site This site was last updated 05/05/11
FRAN2005 #7 Sirmione to Arese
Sunday June 19 and Monday June 20, 2005
I woke up at 6:30 and but surprisingly I was not very tired. I decided to get up and have a cappuccino before going to the earlier Mass then I had planned, since we have now reached the first Sunday of our trip. I went over to Bar Gino and it was nice speaking Italian with the elegant older lady (my age) behind the counter. As the church bells rang from Santa Maria Maggiore, I climbed up the little street and climbed into a pew at exactly 10:00. Being on time allowed me to have a seat because later many were standing but I also had to listen to the entire Homily in Italian. I understood many things he was saying and when he kept repeating "mio padre" I suddenly realized he was talking about his own father, not the Lord. Aha, today is Father's Day and I had forgotten.
After Mass I needed another cappuccino so I stopped at little Bar Piccola and worked on computer - very relaxing. At 1:00 I walked to the little park and saw the statue in honor of the Roman founder of Sirmione, Gaius Valerius Catullus. To get a better idea of where this little town sits see the maps below. It sits at the tip of a long skinny peninsula that juts north into the bottom of Lago di Garda.
This is a scene I stitched together from 4 photos using the new Canon software, its quite amazing how it does it. I took this from the end of the pier in the Catullus Park.
I then took a stroll over behind the church to look at the beach which as you can see is all pebbles and no sand.
At 1:00 I was back at the room and changed into my running gear and at 2:00 I sat out to relax by pool. I stayed there until it cooled down enough and then at 7:40 I did my run to Villa Pioppi again. After I got back we went to lakeside bar at 9:00 and I enjoyed a refreshing Italian beer called Nastra Azzuro. We then strolled to go to dinner at Le Pescatore but decided to again try a new place. We picked Ristorante Re Desidero [Via Antiche Mura, +39-030-919-6683.] As usual I had pizza marguerite followed by prosciutto e melone (cantelope), lasagna and then Veal Milanese. Marcia had lamb cotelleta. I had ananas (pineapple) with gelato for dolci and she had strawberries with lemon.
The waitress had suggested we try a bottle of Villa Pillo Merlot and was she right it was great. When we finished this wonderful dinner, we walked back to Bar Scaglieri and had a limoncello. On the way to the room I finally got a photo of the 2005 Corvette that was driving around the last two days. The guy is from Milano and he has good taste and must be wealthy to afford the gas.
We got to bed early at 11:30 and at 7:30 I woke up and worked on photos and by 10:00 I was running to Villa Pioppi again. Then I went shopping and was able to buy a gift that I know Kaylin will love. I finally settled for a cappuccino at a new place called Bar Bussola and it was an international event with Germans (tedesci) in one corner and a group of four French at the table in the front. The cute part was that the two men were drinking small glasses of beer and the women directed the waitress to bring them the largest glass she had. It was quite funny as they went from French to Italian about the glass size.
I walked around taking pictures of interesting things in the shops.
I had my final cap at Bar Gino and said good-bye for another two years. At 1:00 PM I packed up and we checked out of the hotel at 2:00 PM.
I went to the pool and worked on diarios until Marcia arrived and we were ready to head out. This really was a needed respite in a very lovely setting thanks to Dima's schedule.
At 4:20 Marcia drove west for the 90 mi trip to Milano and Arese to Dima's house which took just short of two hour. We have been to Dima's new house (2 years ago) so we recognized where to go once the GPS got us through Milano.
Tania was there to greet us and we took our bags down to the guest room in the cellar floor. This place is really beautiful especially with the skylights that make you think you are above ground. Great guest bedroom and an exercise room with a treadmill.
The dining room and Dima's office where I could do the website and email easily.
After we got unloaded and settled, Tania brought us, along with my goddaughter, Anastasia, to the nearby town of Garbagnate for dinner at La Refezione [Via Milano 166, Garbagnate, +39-02-995-8942.]
I had spaghetti with scampi (below left) followed by an entree of duck breast (below right.)
Marcia had mousse of zuccato, eggplant and ricotta (below left) and then a main course of pesche spada (swordfish) (below right.)
For dessert I had zuppa melone with fruit and she had fragole (strawberry) mousse.
The walls were covered with art for sale by local artists.
After we got home at 10:30, I loaded FrontPage on Dima's computer and did email getting to bed at 3:30 AM.
KJH Go To -> NEXT DIARIO #8
Kenneth J. Hoffer, MD
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