Alis Grave Nil

Monday, 27 October 2014

Arrivederci Roma et Bonjour Ajaccio

Ajaccio from the top of our tour bus

If felt a bit strange arriving in a different country each day, but it was a nice kind of strange.  We looked forward each morning to exploring the new place we had just arrived at. I forgot to mention that every time we disembarked, the P&O photographers were waiting for us like paparazzi.  They took a photo of disembarking passengers at every stop and then later on you could go to the photo gallery and find your photo and pay...wait for it...£11.80.  They also took photos of you at the black tie evenings (if you wanted a special portrait) and those photos cost £17.95.  The special album to collect all your photos cost £21.00, so if you were daft enough to buy every photo and an album, you would be out of pocket to the tune of about £200 squid or more.
Anyway, we made our way out of the port in Ajaccio and found an open top double decker tour bus and decided to do the little tour.  Quite a few of the other passengers came along as well and it was a lovely tour round the coastal road and then back through the town.  For some strange reason, we didn't take a lot of photos in Ajaccio so I can't show you much of it.  Again, it was a lovely old town with a market in the square and lots of interesting little shops. After the bus tour, we went to a café to have a cappuccino and decide what to do next.  I saw this couple from our cruise ship sitting at the end table in the same café.  I don't like to speak ill of my fellow British passengers but they were both very large and round and I'm sure I heard the woman asking the French waiter if they did English breakfast.  I wasn't sure if I heard it right because there is no way those two would have missed breakfast on board the ship, but sure enough, the waiter brought them a menu. Later on when we were back on board the ship, we went up to the buffet restaurant for afternoon tea - how lovely is that? They did little dainty sandwiches, cakes and toasted tea cakes and it was all very British.  I came upon the round couple again, plates piled high with the little sandwiches and cakes.  I don't like to judge people but I couldn't believe how much they ate.  Maybe food is an addiction for some people. To the Rolling Room with them!
A week into our cruise and we arrive back in Italy, this time in Genoa.  For most of the stops, we had done our own research into what we wanted to see, train timetables etc because the P&O organised excursions were quite expensive.  However, we noticed there was a trip to Portofino and there is no way we could have found our own way there so we splashed the cash and booked the trip and we were very glad we did. 

The coach took us to a little fishing village called Camogli to catch the boat to Portofino.  We had an hour in Camogli to go for a coffee and explore a bit.  It was really lovely, with all the high flats painted different colours.  The tour guide explained that this was for the fishermen years ago.  After they had been at sea for days they would look out for their own apartment by the colour and it would cheer them up and make them feel as if they were nearly home.

Camogli, Italy

Arriving in Portofino

 Portofino is not that big but it is absolutely beautiful.  After having a walk round we stopped at a café for a gelato.  They were expensive but we thought we would treat ourselves.  We thought they would be big and fancy with bells on.  In fact, when they arrived, it was 3 scoops of ice cream in a small silver dish.  Never mind, at least we can say we had a gelato in Portofino. We would like to have stayed for longer but the tour guide told us all to meet up at a certain time to get the boat back for the coach.  We didn't go back to Camogli, however.  This time we went onwards and were dropped off at Santa Margarita which was also a lovely town but we didn't have time to see it properly as we were marched to the coach to go back to Genoa.

Right, onwards and upwards.  Monaco and Antibes in a day next....think I need a rest. 

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