Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Bologna, Pisa, then Rome

We wrapped up our trip to the very lovely and very tiny country of San Marino and hit the road.

There were a ton of switchbacks in the town which made getting around a bit laborious at times,

We only budgeted enough time in Bologna to grab lunch, stroll a bit, and bounce, but it was a good experience.

We were in Bologna long enough to sing the Oscar Meyer song a few times, thankfully. One of Bologna's many nicknames is La Grassa(the fat one) due to its amazing food. The entire concept of a pasta meat sauce (bolognese) was first introduced here.

We began our culinary tour of this great bastion of tastiness at an obvious place: McDonald's.

Whoever named McCrunchy Bread is wasting their talents here.

I went for the panzerotti which were like little pizza bites with Italian cheese and tomatoes. My sammy is the Il Gustoso chicken sandwich with Italian red cabbage, Pecorino Romano DOP cheese & pepper sauce and Italian bacon.

The food really is good in Italy.

The Two Towers are symbols of the city. They were built around 1119 in the middle ages. For a short time the Asinelli, the taller tower of the two, was the tallest structure in the world.

Dante gives a shoutout to the shorter Garisenda Tower in Inferno, comparing a giant he meets named Antaeus to it:

Just as the Garisenda seems when seen
beneath the leaning side, when clouds run past
and it hangs down as if about to crash,
so did Antaeus seem to me as I
watched him bend over me—a moment when
I’d have preferred to take some other road.

We had our real lunch at Sfoglia Rina despite the fact that they had no cheeseburgers or pizza nuggets.

They had a very fun little area where you could buy pasta of all shapes and sizes to take home.

We got a:
tagliatelle with ragu alla bolognese

"from the Italian tagliare, meaning "to cut", is a traditional type of pasta from the Emilia-Romagna and Marche regions of Italy."

And a:
tortellini in broth

The Quadrilatero is a grid of streets filled with cafes and lavish delis that stands on what once was Roman Bologna.

There was some famous band staying at this hotel.. I don't recall who.

Next was a stop in Pisa. The story of the tower and all of the various ways they tried to stop it from leaning even during construction was very amusing. Eventually they gave up and you can see the smaller ring at the top is parallel with the ground rather than the leaning structure.

Pisa was a fancy maritime republic much like Venice and has a lot of fancy buildings to show for it. The big guy on the right there is the Duomo and the the dome on the left is the Battistero.

I needed a spritz break before I scaled the famous leaning tower.

The Duomo is funny because it's clearly made out of pieces of other buildings. Several of the stone blocks had portions of words on them even.

I don't think I realized that the tower of Pisa is a big tube.

The stone stairs were super worn down from all the visitors.

I did my best to fix it.

All roads lead to Rome.

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