ITALY: Bologna, Emilia Romagna - Day Eight
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Day Eight
Bologna is the capital city of the province Emilia-Romagna. It is known for its
University, that was established in 1088 AD and is the oldest continually
operating university in the world. It has delicious food, covered arched
walkways called "portico", a couple of leaning towers (yes, Bologna also has
leaning towers not just Pisa) and thousands of Vespas zooming around you like
flies.
We got lost in Bologna and ended up
in this street that was getting narrower and
narrower. Finally we saw "the light at the end of the tunnel" and happily
drove towards it only to end up in the middle of the main piazza that is
closed for traffic and in front of an Italian police car with two perfectly
dressed officers (their uniforms are designed by Giorgio Armani!!!) in it and
me totally scared, thinking that we would end up in an Italian jail where you
can stay forgotten or trapped into a bureaucratic mess FOREVER. Well… My
husband kept driving, the policemen were reading their paper, looked up,
looked at us and decided to keep reading rather then to argue with
"stranieri", and like we drove into the piazza we also drove out of it.
We parked the car, found an outdoor restaurant to have a beer and I
wandered around to find us a nice place to eat; and so I did; under
the beautiful gothic arches with medieval torches on the walls. We
visited the Basilica of San Petronio which was built in 1390 to surpass
St. Peter's in Rome, but the pope got mad and built a palace right
next to the wall that was suppose to be extended and they could
never finish it. The truth be told they also ran out of money, so only
half of its walls are covered with marble and the rest is brick. Like
many other cathedrals its construction lasted for centuries and it is
still not quite finished.
This was our last stop on our trip. Our gas tank was
almost empty so we decided to use the coupon we
got form the previous unlucky encounter with the
gas pump. We picked a gas station with the same
name and asked the salesman if he would honor it.
Of course… NOT! It was not his station's coupon…
and, yes, it was the same company but not the same
gas station, how can they (meaning us) not
understand that!?!
After some yelling and hand signaling we left the station without gas and Chuck so mad that he kept driving all the way to
Slovenia where we finally stopped to get gas with only a cup and I mean a bloody, darn CUP of gas left!

I ended up sending the darn coupon to Cristiano and Liliana, our gracious hosts from Colonica Belvedere.