Tuesday, September 17, 2013 (Day 7)
– Not much. =)
– 4p Meet and Greet with Iron Donkey to pick up bikes and get the bike route
– 7p dinner at La Taverna di San Giuseppe
So, today was a day of total relaxation. Most people spend their vacations relaxing on a beach, but we spent our vacation day today relaxing with two computers and a good wifi connection in our apartment. Mark is taking a couple of online classes, so he spent time watching the class videos and getting all caught up. I spent some time updating the blog and working with the Schlumberger Cycling Club volunteer lists for their ride this coming Saturday. Yes, there is work to do even while on vacation. =) Since we pretty much decided we were out of things to do in Siena, this was a good way to spend our day.
We left the apartment, finally, around 3p and did some walking around, grabbing some more cannolis and doing some window shopping. Our meeting place with the bike people was in a parking lot outside of the historical center, so we walked in that general direction. It was a new area for us as well, which was good. We’ve been walking the same streets up and down for 2 days already.
Iron Donkey had a representative meet with us and give us our two bikes. We rented road bikes from them and they look and feel great. I just had a dream last night that I had lost all my bike muscles due to the lack of biking for the past week, so it felt so good for me to be back on a bike! Our representative was extremely helpful putting our own seats on the rental bikes, providing helmets, and bike computers. He also provided us with 60 pages of step-by-step and amazingly detailed instructions for our bike routes over the next 10 days. Also we got another packet of paper with information about what we’ll be seeing along the way. I love all this information! This was my favorite part about today was getting a huge packet of information to take home and read through. =) This is not true for a lot of people. 😉
We even were given a full size bike pump that we could put with our luggage, but would be useful in pumping our tires every morning. This proved to be an interesting item to try and bring back to our apartment, but I managed to get it strapped onto my back. =)
Our bike tour for the next 10 days goes from Siena to Perugia, though not in a linear path of course. Every morning we will need to have our luggage down at the hotel reception at 9:30am and a taxi driver will come at some point and take it to our next hotel. Then it’s just our job to bike about 20-30 miles over rolling hills to our next hotel, stopping at tourist spots along the way. We are both very excited to start the bike tour.
We biked back to the hotel and locked our bikes in their car port and then picked out a place for dinner. We went for a walk soon after towards our dinner spot which was in a whole other area of Siena that we haven’t walked yet, so it was good to see. Siena is divided into these neighborhood sections and each section roots for one of the horses in the Il Palio horse race that I’ve been mentioning on the blog. The neighborhoods all have their own mascots and flags and decorate in these colors. Well, tonight, our restaurant was in the winning neighborhood horse from this past August, so it was highly decorated with their blue flags.
Dinner was fantastic!! We shared a beef Florentine for dinner. When you order, the minimum order is usually 1kg and they bring out the raw cut for you to check out beforehand. The 1kg includes the bone and fat of course. Then, the cut of meat is carved at the table and shared. It was so, so tasty! Afterwards, I’m not sure where we had the room, but we went ahead and got some amazing desserts! Wow, my chocolate souffle was more like a lava cake and it was magnificent. Mark had an amazing piece of chocolate cake as well.
From here it was back to the apartment to pack up for tomorrow. I didn’t take many photos today, but I’ll try and make up for it by taking tons of photos while biking. =)