Day 17 Staying Cool in Tuscania

We spent the the day in Tuscania going to the market and trying to stay cool on the hottest day so far.  I spent most of the day planning our field trip to Rome the next day when the heat was supposed to break.  I’m big on planning.  I don’t believe in just winging it when we travel, particularly with kids in tow.  My feeling is be as prepared as possible, and then hope for the best and be flexible when you’re actually at your destination.  So, with that in mind we booked a few things ahead of time.  I bought our Vatican tickets for Monday.  After a ton of research and emails I decided against getting a private tour guide for Saturday’s trip since I didn’t want to be tied down to anyone else’s schedule and figured the girls really didn’t need to be schlepped around according to a guide.  So instead we decided to go all out tourist and book tickets on the double decker red bus that goes around the city and lets you jump on and off all day long.

Now, I have to say as a New Yorker I have come to loathe these buses as they chug through the city, clog traffic and generally make me feel like I’m being perpetually viewed by tourists holding up video cameras as the bus whizzes up Broadway or Central Park West.  My daughters however have been wanting to ride on one of those buses since they day they could walk.  This seemed like the perfect compromise.  Ride the double decker bus in Rome!  It also solved our problem of having five of us unable to share a taxi, and not having to make the girls walk everywhere.  I wasn’t up for figuring out the public bus and metro system for just one day in Rome.  The added bonus was that the Red bus has an audio tour that accompanies it so they girls were doubly thrilled.

The last part of our plan was to get a Roma Pass that gives you free entrance to your first two sites and then discounts to every site there after.  More importantly it lets you skip the line at the first two sites and is good for three days.  I decided we’d pick that up in the train station when we got there because I couldn’t figure out if there was a kids’ price or not on-line.  The only thing left to do was figure out our lunch place.  I picked Taverna Romana after reading multiple rave reviews, the only hitch was that they didn’t take reservations but I figured we’d get there at opening and be fine.

So, with plan in hand for the next day we went out to a late night Italian dinner here in Tuscania at Torre di Lavello, our favorite restaurant so far.  The girls were so excited to go out to eat at 8:00 at night (or 20:00 as they pointed out).  They declared themselves real Italian girls.  Many of the really good restaurants only serve pizza at night, and Torre di Lavello is one of them.  The pizza is amazing, cracker thin, piping hot, and topped with all sorts of fresh vegetables, herbs, fish, meats, whatever you can imagine.  I’ve become addicted to zucchini blossoms and they are even better when melted into the fresh pizza cheese.  The girls devoured their pizza as well.  But, the best part of the night was the walk home along the dim lamp-lit cobblestone streets with music lilting in the air and the stars glittering in the deep clear navy blue sky.  The girls, and us, were in awe of the night sky and the romance of this little Italian walled town.

new sun hats from the market
new sun hats from the market

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