Snow on the Apennines!
Outer wall, Hadrian's Villa
Ornamental pool the size of a football field
View towards the main buildings before the rain got too heavy
Got a pretty early start (after a surprise omelet breakfast, unusual for Italy) for an easy day's drive from San Giovanni Rotondo on the East Coast, north and west on the Autostrada to Rome. Dawdled along at a leisurely 120 kph, staying well out of the way of holiday herds of Alfas and Audis (All Saint's Day). Were startled to see snow on the peaks of some of the higher Appenines: winter really is coming! Even some of the trees had changed color, though mostly only yellows and rusts. Reg tirelessly proposed one last excursion en route; a stop see Hadrian's Villa on the outskirts of the city.
The skies opened when we arrived, so we sat in the parking lot and lunched on Genoa sausage and cheese, trying to wait out the rain. To no avail. Since we were there anyway, (after only a few of Mable's goat-track excursions, this time Imperial goat tracks) we thought it best to have a peek. The villa is really a small city by itself, with lakes, pools, amphitheatres, temples etc., all for the pleasure of the peripatetic emperor (of Hadrian's Wall fame in Britain and Hadrian's Library in Athens) and would take a good four hours to see properly. I managed a few pics before the thunder and lightening encouraged us to retreat to the car. Couldn't get the camera wet, now could we?
Soaked, we headed for our hotel near the coast in Fiumicino on the other side of Rome, dumped the luggage and set out to return the car to Renault. The drop-off spot was located down some very dark and very flooded streets in what appeared to be countryside. Eventually the agent appeared, took the keys and drove us to the airport where we caught the shuttle back to our hotel. One last Italian supper at a nearby restaurant and we hit the sack, ready for our return home.
As my Dad always said on returning from one of my parents excursions; "Travel is great, but there's no place like home."
Thanks to all our faithful readers, and
Paul & Reg