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Win a trip to Italy

Saturday, 27 September 2014 by

                                      That’s right, a trip. To celebrate the release of The Sunnyvale Girls go to www.penguin.com.au/competitions submit a review and you could win a trip for two to Italy.  (Sadly if you are my friends or family, you can’t enter. Depressing, I know!)   I’m so excited about this competition as this time last year I was in Italy researching for this book! You can find my previous blog posts on my website where I write about my amazing trip. (there are lots of photo’s!)   Also in a few weeks I’m off on a national tour. I’d love to meet you and have a chance to tell you about this story, so if you can make one of these events then please come along. 🙂  Details here.   To keep up with all these details and more please

Rome

Thursday, 31 October 2013 by

Going to Rome we were a little worried. We had heard stories about having your wallets stolen. And we were a little sad to leave our car (freedom) behind in Arezzo. No one was game to drive in Rome and I’m quite glad as I don’t think I could have returned it scratch free. But we didn’t have to worry as we had no problems walking around Rome. (We did stay above ground mind you. No crazy subways for us) We arrived by train and walked to our hotel, which wasn’t far at all. We are used to the cobbled roads and uneven footpaths. Rome feels like one giant maze. Tall buildings hug the tiny roads so you have no idea what could be around the corner and in Rome there was always something amazing.  Like the Trevi fountain, just sitting squished in around these buildings. We could walk to most of these sights from

Pompeii & Naples

Sunday, 27 October 2013 by

I was going to go straight to blogging about Rome but then I had all these photo’s from our visit to Naples and Pompeii so I’ve had to split it into another blog. :/ I try to keep the photo’s to a minimum, honest!! So when we got to Rome we did a day trip to Naples and first stop was a castle made from lava rock with a massive marble entry. (It once sat surrounded by sea.) Then a walk through the city and a big mall type building set out like a cross with amazing marble and mossaic floors. Yes, I took lots of photo’s of the mosaics too. I was going to share them but I have heaps from the Vatican. :/ Okay, maybe just one. And people were just walking all over it!! If I had busted my butt making this I would have it roped off lol. This (Piazza Plebiscito) was just around the corner and

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Part 2 – Montone

Monday, 21 October 2013 by

  After Venice we caught trains to Florence and then Arezzo. Here we picked up our hire car and drove south to Montone. Mum had found this place advertised in a magazine so we decided to spend 11 nights here and make it our base.  Casa Valdeste is a beautiful late 14th-century, terrace-style two-bedroom cottage on three floors, 60 metres from Montone’s centrepiece, Piazza Fortebraccio, the main square in the medieval village of Montone. The walls are of stone, about one metre thick and buttressed on the south-western side.  The house features huge oak and chestnut beams on all ceilings, double-glazed chestnut windows, world-renowned Cotto d’Este floor tiles and exquisite ceramic wall-hangings. Casa Valdeste is owned by some Aussies and this is their website. Check it out. It’s a one way road around the large wall of our little medieval village. From the top on a foggy day it feels like we are floating through

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Part 2 – Montone

Monday, 21 October 2013 by

After Venice we jumped on a train to Florence, changed trains to get to Arezzo and this is where we picked up our hire car to drive to Montone. I could tell you a few funny stories of starting to drive on the wrong side of the road (yes, I found myself here on the odd occassion) and indicating to turn off a road which left us gliding to a stop with a reving motor. You see where the flicker is normally for me was the gear leaver, so I kept accidently kicking the car out of gear when I wanted to indicate. But it didn’t take long to figure out and we were on our way south towards Perugia. What made us stay here was my mum. She had seen this place advertised in a magazine and some Australians actually own Casa Valdeste where we stayed.  It looked perfect. Montone was founded between AD 800 and 1000, is a working

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Italy Trip

Tuesday, 15 October 2013 by

Well I’m back home to the flat ground, huge paddocks filled with turning crops and the buzzing of flies! I missed home but I had a ball in Italy. We had a stop over in Doha so we stayed a night and explored. Amazing place with so much money! It was great to have to day to see the sights and the people were so lovely and helpful. Favourite spots were the Souq Wagif (local market) with its spices, and smells. Where men wear their thobe (long white shirt) with a red and white gahfeya on their heads and women in their black abaya. The buildings here were amazing, every one different and we went to the huge shopping centre Villaggio that has its own canals with gondolas, ice rink and games centre with roller coaster etc. And the ceiling was great, made everything feel big and spacious. Then we flew to Venice and onto a water taxi.

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