between the lands

Jessica and Andrew’s travel journal

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gimme 5!

Posted by Andrew in ITALY, ICELAND (October 25, 2006 at 7:28 pm)

5 towns that is…Cinque Terre. On The north part of Italys west coast are 5 little towns that are somewhat frozen in time. All of the stereotypes of “the old country” as they say, are in full effect. the old women hanging out their wash to dry:
CIMG5245 lady hanging wash 2.jpg CIMG5233 woman hanging wash.jpg

Men picking olives in the fields and making fresh olive oil(and pesto–oh yeah!)
CIMG5430 guy working through door.jpg CIMG5407 j with olive tree.jpg

men and women sitting on benches and talking smack all day long:
CIMG5253 people on bench rio.jpg

The towns themselves are amazingly beautiful. there are no cars allowed in them, so you really have to take a train from one to the next, or hike along a centuries-old path which is mostly made of steps carved into the mountain, or stone paths made by hand.
CIMG5404 stone bridge.jpg CIMG5519 stone path.jpg[jn sez: until the railroad in the last century, these foot paths were the ONLY way in, out, or between the towns. all the crops were grown out in the countryside terraces and carried on the people’s backs into the the towns. HARDCORE!!!]

Each town is a few miles from the next along cliffs that overlook the ligurian sea.
CIMG5401 3 terras through trees.jpg CIMG5457 vernazza bay wide.jpg

We hiked from town to town through terraced fields where people have been growing food for a long time….
CIMG5425 terrace and sea.jpg CIMG5361 rio terraces.jpg CIMG5392 hut with no roof.jpg

We stayed in the town of Riomaggiore, one of the quieter ones, but it also had a beach.
CIMG5330 riomaggiore wide.jpg CIMG5248 view down street rio.jpg

The daily menu in Cinque Terre for us was basically tomato, mozzarella and foccacia(invented in this region), with pesto smeared all over it.

And to end, in a sense, one leg of our journey, we swam in the Mediterranian sea.
CIMG5372 j and a and rock.jpg

heres a video, featuring that famed body of water, which was still quite warm in late october. there are some pics in the movie too..

We are in florence now, along with 8 hundred million other tourists. We’ll be here for a couple of days, then headed to Turin, where well be checking out the International slow food festival, and a worldwide gathering of food producers who want to be able to control the production and distribution of that food. Salone Del gusto, and Terra Madre.(click for info)

Meanwhile, a couple of radio stories I produced in Iceland were on the air in your hometown last week.(well many of your hometowns). one about the US military base that recently closed there, and one about the giant dam/smelter project thats being built in the last wild land in Europe. You can listen to them by downloading the programs linked here, Ill put the individual stories up here on the site soon.

3 Responses to “gimme 5!”

  1. rmodry Says:

    Absolutely beautiful! Keep the pics coming.

  2. maralynfisher Says:

    wow!!!! this might be the best yet - i am loving your adventures…

  3. Susan Hubbard Says:

    which we were there with you…
    it’s so dreamy!!

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