Monday, March 5, 2012

Thursday in Perugia

03/01, Thursday
Another Sergio suggestion: visit Perugia, home of famous chocolate making, colleges, and museums.

It was a pleasant walk from the bus station on a beautiful sunny day. Sergio told us the bus would work better than the train. He was right once again !

Galleria Nazionale Dell' Umbria in Palazzo dei Priori is our first stop. This gallery probably had more impressive art than we have seen to date. Plus for some reason it was free. The building / palace was a work of art in itself.

Many of the pieces were painted on wood and the panels attached called polyptych, multiple panels of art (for some reason, these were not allowed in churches in previous times...maybe because they were icons). They were mostly commissioned for churches, monasteries or convents. We spent a couple hours here. The art covered the time from the 13th century to the 19th. Wow, did we see lots of Madonas with Child and Christ's crucifixtions.

Then we walked around the Doumo square and fountain and did some people watching. Lots of college kids were meeting and sunning themselves on the steps up to the Duomo. This is a good sized city and has a large university.

A 2300 year-old Etruscan well has been exposed beneath 4.5 meters of the current level of the city. It is no longer used for potable water, but we marveled at the Etruscan engineering. This culture was very advanced.

I asked the woman at the well (not Ruth, from the Old Testament) for a local spot for lunch and we were not disappointed. Lots of food and wine, so no dinner needed tonight.

Then the Doumo was opened so we toured it and listened to a commentary. It has a great deal of restoration going on.

Bought some great looking chocolate since this town is famous for producing chocolates, and took our time returning to the bus station. There is a bus driver strike planned for later today, and we wanted to be sure we would get back home. The bus departed late and took longer to reach Sanfatucchio, so Vera had to pick us up at the trattoria.

Tomorrow we hope to make plans for our last month in Italy. Sergio (and his father who lives in Naples) have given us suggestions of where to stay near Naples (Napoli) which we will research.

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