During the cruise, we were scheduled to have dinner at 6 PM every day…just in time for sunset. I made a habit of ordering early, excusing myself from the table, and coming back with sunset photos to show off to my fellow dinner guests. Here’s how the sky looked from Livorno’s harbor on October 21st, 2015. A larger version is viewable here.
Piazza dei Miracoli, the location of the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. We weren’t allowed inside the Duomo because there was a funeral service being held at the time. Still gorgeous, though! A larger version is viewable here. And if you recall a couple of months back, something about this should seem familiar…
After spending all day walking around Nice, I realized that it was time to start heading back to the bus and Villefranche. On my way out along the coastline, I came across the Ascenseur du Chateau, AKA Castle Hill. I looked at those stairs with a little trepidation; could I climb this gorgeous landmark and still have enough time to make it back to the meetup? Turns out I did, and the effort definitely paid off…A larger version is available here.
Now that I’ve written a few days’ worth of entries about my latest trip, I think it’s time that actually showed some of it. The first major stop on cruise was Villefranche-sur-Mer, which is part of the French Riviera. After taking a smaller boat to reach land, it’s possible to climb the nearby hill and ride a local bus over to Nice. Along the way up, I came across this view seen from the Saint Elme Passage. A larger version is viewable here.
This week’s challenge is all about gatherings, so I thought I’d jump slightly ahead of my travel writing and give you guys the first glimpse my time in Europe. St. Peter’s Square sees thousands of visitors every day. It’s designed for people to gather and feel embraced; the columns look like open arms, beckoning you to come closer. You don’t have to be religious to appreciate the intricate architecture and sense of scale. This place is much, much bigger than it looks; it took about a dozen tries to get this panorama to work. Just imagine how many people have been here…
Larger version is viewable here.
Originally built in 1896, the Sutro Baths were a large swimming pool complex. It was open until 1966, when it was shut down due to limited finances, and a fire destroyed much of the structure while it was being demolished. The ruins are now part of the surrounding National Park. It’s a neat landmark near the western terminus of San Francisco, just downslope from the historic Cliff House. Larger version is viewable here.
I spent last Saturday volunteering at a coastal cleanup in Capitola, California. It was my first time back there in over 20 years. That beach is always gorgeous, but looked especially awesome in the early, quiet morning. Larger version is viewable here.