This day probably ended up being the most laid-back yet enjoyable leg of the entire cruise, as our excursion was just half a day and we then got the ship to ourselves for the whole afternoon and it was ecstatically gorgeous weather.
May 20, 2013 – Visiting Tuscania, an Olive Oil Factory, and a Sunny Afternoon on Equinox
And now it’s time to talk about Today, Monday, May 20, in Civitivecchia! As I mentioned, we didn’t do a Rome excursion, as it would just be too exhausting and we already had a pretty definitive experience there less than 2 years ago. So we picked an excursion that sounded nice and ended up being fantastic: An olive oil tasting on a farm mixed in with scenic driving through the countryside. It met all expectations.
Driving through Tuscan Countryside
We drove through a few medieval towns that were filled with charm and cool towers, such as Taquina (?) and then actually stopped and walked around the town of Tuscania, which only shares a name with the region known as Tuscany. It was a jaw-droppingly medieval town with gorgeous views everywhere. Also had a cheap (1 Euro) cappucino there in the town square.
Exploring the Town of Tuscania
After that we drove through more luxurious countryside while also getting to know some great people, Harriet and Doug. They were the first couple that was truly a blast to interact with, as most have been friendly but just not very energetic. Yay! We finally met an “Amy” I think. We actually saw them the night of the Monaco day as during that evening, we played craps (both Larry & I rolled – Larry did better than I did) and both of them had played a bit. I remembered her by her distinctive short hairstyle. Anyway, she’s a freakin’ riot, as is he. An older couple, but total NYers. Love them. Hope to see them again this evening or at least again a few times during the cruise.
Back to today’s excursion, we then got to the olive oil farm, and the handsome Italian owner, Flavio, first fed us some prusciuttto and bread along with various of his olive oils, and it was fantastic. There was also an adorable but big dog there that couldn’t have been friendlier. So cool. We got to see the operation a bit as well as do some souvenir shopping, and I got a very small tin of extra virgin oil. The drive back was very pleasant although I’m pretty sure I passed out. The countryside is unreal. Lots of pictures.
Olive Oil Factory
Anyway, the best part of today is that we were done by 12. We actually had the whole rest of the day to just relax and enjoy the ship, and it was fantastic as most of the passengers went on Rome-based excursions and they weren’t coming back till 5. Actually, as I type this on my balcony, I’ve been listening to the many tour busses coming back. That meant we had open access to everything. And it was gloriously sunny so we took advantage of that, first going to the lawn club for a few drinks before heading back to the Pool area, getting a snack to hold us over until our dinner reservation at 8:30pm at the Tuscan Grill. We then went to the Pool Bar where a very attractive Turk named Musa was holding bar, and he was a great bartender and very easy to talk to. I think we spent a few hours there just talking to him and enjoying the scenery there (him) as really, all the young people had left for the tours and not much was there to look at. He even admitted that. Got quite toasty there and met a few people at the bar, including a hilarious drunk British lady. Good times! Larry & I then enjoyed the hot tub as it was perfect weather and no one was around to fight for it. Then it was shower time and after a soft drink back at the Sunset Deck, we are back at the room, with me typing this novel while Larry passes out and recharges. I should do that, but oh well.
A Leisurely Afternoon on the Equinox
After that luxurious afternoon, we then ended up making reservations at the Tuscan Grille for dinner. Delicious and plentiful Italian food was pushed on us by our very courteous and friendly waitress, and I think it was good that we loaded up on food, as while we drank plenty of wine, we then decided to continue the fun, ending up back at the Martini Bar. While there, got to know the bartenders a bit and also ended up meeting Melissa, who had sat next to us with her empty bottle of alcohol that also happened to have a dead scorpion in it. I thought she was a prostitute at first, but after starting to talk with her realized that I was not correct. But she was a riot and had lots of interesting stories. Finally poured ourselves home as we still had another day ahead of us with excursions when visiting our next destination….
2013 Mediterranean Adventure Pics
- Mediterranean: Days 0 & 1 – Flying to and Arrival at Barcelona, Spain / Cruise Departs
- Mediterranean: Day 2 – Villefranche (France), Monte Carlo (Monaco), Eze (France)
- Mediterranean: Day 3 – Florence, Italy
- Mediterranean: Day 4 – Rome / Tuscany, Italy
- Mediterranean: Day 5 – Sorrento & Amalfi Coast, Italy
- Mediterranean: Day 6 – First Day at Sea
- Mediterranean: Day 7 – Dubrovnik, Croatia
- Mediterranean: Day 8 – Venice, Italy Day 1
- Mediterranean: Day 9 – Venice, Italy Day 2
- Mediterranean: Day 10 – Kotor, Montenegro
- Mediterranean: Day 11 – Second Day at Sea
- Mediterranean: Day 12 – Third Day at Sea
- Barcelona: Day 1 – Part 1: Arrival, West Loop Tour, Hotel Espana
- Barcelona: Day 1 – Part 2: Sagrada Familia, East Loop Tour, Tapas
- Barcelona: Day 2 – Larry’s Birthday, Park Guell, Casa Batllo, Harbor Walk