We had mixed feelings leaving Paridiso. The breakfast was bountiful and the staff gave us such a friendly send off. But we had to go.
We made our way up to the centro storico of Gabassi Terme – a small quaint medieval town. We turned to the right, then left, and every other combination until we found the road south covered in fog, nebbio. We saw no hills but the fog created its own mood. As the Irish say, we were having a soft day.
We walked for about four miles when the fog lifted. We were surprised when two people came out of the woods. They were mushrooms hunters. They had found porcini mushrooms and another kind that we had never seen. The fellow showed us with his hands how was going to cut the mushrooms and sauté them with oil, wine, and then finish the dish with butter. Darn, we still had walking to do.
I titled this blog as strolling because that is how the guidebook labeled it. An easy peasy day. Really? Here’s Rich hiking up one of the easy hills. In the far left background on the horizon is Gambassi Terme. Rich also told me to include another image of him walking under a home with cats lying in a window and in a flower box.
As we neared the top of the next hill, I was amused by the VF sign next to a US Postmaster General approved box. We export our movies and music to Europe. Why not mailboxes.
After a break to rest our feet and eat a small snack, we resumed climbing to the highest point on this segment of the hike. We saw a group of Italian women taking photos at a bend in the road. There it was – San Gigminano. As we came down the hill, bikers and other walkers (we talked with a group of twenty French men and women) were taking more photos of SG. We pushed on to finish our final climb to centro where the Albergo Cisterna is located. Tourists galore.
We joined the crowds after settling into our rooms and walked the town. An impressive World Heritage site. Buildings from the 13th Century and several earlier.
After a brief rest, it was time for dinner. We were off to San Martino 26. We ordered the seven course menu. I’ll show a few of the dishes – faux red olives (tuna with herbs), duck liver with green apples, cuttlefish pasta, risotto with cuttlefish (must use everything, no?), and dessert of creamy lemon. Our wine was a Collio even though we were in Veranaccia land. We had a quiet, leisurely walk back to the hotel passing the Duomo. Where were the tourists?