Monday, June 29, 2009

Travels in Europe

Sorry it’s been so long since I updated the blog, I’ve been traveling and moving jobs, so this is really my first free time to write anything. I’ve been having trouble finding time to post photos on Facebook. Enough excuses… you know what they say about excuses.

May and June have been great. The weather started to get warm, and for the most part it stopped raining. Naples is so close to so many wonderful places that you can really explore the area when the weather gets nice, and you have daylight until 9PM. Next year I strongly recommend May for visitors. From what we have been told it starts to get hot in July and August, but we will keep you posted.

Toward the end of May, Melissa and I were getting very excited to have “the girls” some and visit us in Naples. For clarification, “the girls” include Nicole, Andrea, Liz, and Lexi (whom I hadn’t even met). I was all ready for the visit, one week of work left before the holiday weekend, and ready to have some fun… when my boss walks over and says, “What are you plans for the weekend?” That is a loaded question when you are in the Navy. Well, to make a long story short, I ended up in Lisbon, Portugal… the next day. It wasn’t then end of the world; I only missed “the girls” visit to Rome. I was back in Naples in time for the rest of the trip, good times. BTW – Portugal was great except I was working 12 hour days. But I would definitely go back to Portugal, and stay right on the beach, a great surf destination.

We had a lot of fun in Naples with “the girls.” We hit the beach bars for the first time this year. Basically Naples is like New Jersey in so many ways. Picture Joey Harrison’s surf club on the beach in Italy, and that is exactly what you have at several beach clubs in Italy. In so many ways Naples reminds me of New Jersey, you pay for the beach, the Neapolitans build beach clubs right up to the water, cutting off access and charging you to get in. We hit the Briganti football team’s playoff game, watched them win, and then attended the post game Toga party… oh yes everyone had a blast.

And then we were off to Dubrovnik, Croatia. We drove across Italy, and caught an overnight ferry from Bari, Italy to Dubrovnik. I slept like a baby on the boat, but I don’t think that the girls fared quite as well as I did, it was a little bit rough that night. So we arrived in Croatia in the morning rested (sort of) and ready to rock. We rented a great apartment right in the heart of the old city. Dubrovnik is a walled city that has stood for the last 11 centuries. The ramparts surrounding the city are still completely intact, and the wall around the city has protected Dubrovnik as recently as the 1990’s, when the Bosnians laid siege to Dubrovnik and shelled the city with artillery. It was really pretty amazing to walk around the city. The first thing that we did was walk the wall around the city looking at the amazing views and vistas. The food was fantastic, and we spent some time in a bar that was through a hole in the wall overlooking the rocky coast.

Dubrovnik also had fantastic food and bars. The city is small and somewhat crowded, but the small restaurants and bars just overflow into the streets. One night we saw a live performance on the steps going up to the town square. I recommend a visit to anyone; make sure you go in the summer time.

From Dubrovnik we drove to Montenegro, a very nice costal country that has only existed as a country for the last 2 years. It’s amazing to realize that the area was torn by war just a decade ago. The area has recovered nicely. We drove down the coast from the rocky shores of Croatia to the rocky shores of Dubrovnik, but when we finally got out to the coast in the city of Budva, where there is a much smaller walled city on the coast, surrounded by beautiful beaches. It was a great trip and a very nice drive.

After the girls left town we did a long weekend in Prague with our Navy lawyer friends here in Naples. Prague could be my favorite city in Europe so far. But based on the legal council of the people I was traveling with, I can only tell you about certain parts of the trip. Let’s just say the Prague might be the Vegas of Europe.

So, we spent 3 days and 3 nights in Prague, and we still weren’t able to see all the sights that we wanted to see. We started with a walk through the Jewish Museum on our way to a bike tour of the city. The Nazi’s were such unbelievable scumbags that I cringe when I see some of these sights in Europe. Prague has an unbelievable preserved Jewish quarter, because Hitler hoped to us the Jewish area of Prague as a museum to the EXTINCT Jewish race. When I hear stuff like that it makes me so angry that humans allowed that type of thing to happen, and we just need to make sure that it never happens again.

So, Prague is pretty amazing, fantastic food, great bars, cheap beer, and a killer party scene… who wants to go back with me?

Ok, that is all for now. More stories to follow.


1 comment:

  1. Great Travels....

    Also good to see your keeping things in perspective... You can visit Rome another time...

    And what's the matter with the guy's that follow this blog.... no comments on that bevi of beauties...