Sunday, July 31, 2011

Vicenza Centro - Part 3 - Monte Berico

Another part of Vicenza that I absolutely LOVED was seeing Monte Berico.
Monte Berico is a church dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

The history is...  
According to the legend, the Blessed Virgin appeared on this hill twice: the first time occurred on March 7, 1426, the second on August 1, 1428. At this time in the Veneto, the people and economy had been suffering from a terrible plague for years. The Madonna promised that if the people of Vicenza built a church on the top of the hill she would rid them of the plague. The people kept their promise and the church was built in 3 months. I found this info Here.

The church is amazing. I have never seen so much Gold in a Church before! There are hanging lights everywhere which give the church such an amazing ambiance.

The other great part about this church is the Piazzale della Vittoria!
Piazzale della Vittoria is the square in front of the basilica which was dedicated September 23, 1924. It lies at the front of the northern facade and show a full view of the city of Vicenza. A vast circular cement railing circles around this large open balcony, which looks out over the city.

Here are the pictures of us with the view of the city all around...

I thought this sign was noteworthy...

I was shocked that you couldn't wear sleeveless shirts or shirts into the church.
I was told that it was a respect thing.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Vicenza Centro - Part 2

Well... here are more pictures of our Vicenza explorations

All of the streets look like this! They are so pretty. Stores are downstairs and the homes/flats are up above!

Church of San Vincenzo at Piazzo Dei Signori

Piazza Dei Signori
The two columns in Piazza dei signori were built at different times.  The lion represents the Venetian republic and was once the only column in the square.  It wasn't until over a century later that the second column was built in honor of Vicenza and its citizens.

in front of the Palazzo del Capitanio, in Piazza dei Signori
aka Town Hall
This is a staue of Palladio in the
Piazzetta del Palladio.
He designed most of the buildings in Vicenza.

Recycling is serious business in Italy. There are multiple recycling bins like this EVERYWHERE.
So far everywhere we have visited has been REALLY CLEAN! I was very suprised!

There is not much parking in the town centers. Many streets are for pedestrians only, so we parked here. Isn't it beautiful. Everything is so pretty here! I love this place!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Summer in Italy - Vicenza Central - Part 1

We have now been in Italy for a few days...
let me just say it is very "foreign"! I have been resting ALOT - Jet Lag SUCKS!!
We have mostly just hung out on post. We went to the pool, library, doctors office (to set an appt for Stephens x-rays), commisary, etc. The most important thing was on the FIRST day we made a trip to the mall just to get GELATO :

The kids have been enjoying hanging out with their cousins at the house and I have enjoyed napping at the house! :)

It has been great to be back with Angela and Sheldon. 3 years is too long to be away! I hope we dont ever have to do this again! 

Today we ventured out to the Town Central of Vicenza. Lets just say it was AMAZING!! 
This place is just like the movies... tiny cars, tiny streets, tiny people, tiny portions, etc. 
And, YES, you do need to jump out of the way of tiny speeding Italian cars!
The sidewalks are about the size of our curbs... There is street/curbish-sidewalk/building... no grass, no extra space. It can be a little scary! But it is so beautiful! We went out when it was drizzling. We all had to wear pants and sweaters because it was so cold... JULY + Rain = Cold ??????
But is was very sureal. I couldn't stop taking pictures! Everything was so pretty!
Let me show you what I mean....

This is the Theatro Olimpico... One of the Oldest Theaters in the World.
Built in 1585!

I loved this sign!

I will post more pictures soon!
I took TONS!! I might have a wordless week... LOL

Our Summer Vacation - Week 1

Our Summer Vacation officially began last week... it started off with a bang, or maybe I should say a BREAK! Yes, as you saw in my last post Stephen Broke a few bones! We were supposed to leave for Italy the NEXT DAY!! Well, as God would have it.... WE did leave! Just not ThursDAY, we left Friday morning at 2 am to begin our LONG trek to Italy!
No we didnt Walk! If we had we might have gotten their faster! We flew Space-A aka Space Available a.k.a. A Hop aka A MAC flight. All of this to say.... We drove to Charleston, South Carolina to "hop" a "space-a" flight to Ramstein, Germany. We tried to catch one of Friday, and then we hung out in Charleston on Saturday and Sunday...

I love the stained glass windows in the churches!

This is Alyssa and Cassandra. We met her at the terminal on base and hung out with her while we were waiting on available flights.

Me and Stephen on the FREE TROLLY!!

We went to the Waterfront Park and watched to boats! It was VERY breezy!
All of Charleston was really pretty. I cant wait to come back and visit with Detto!

Then we went back to the terminal to wait... 
and wait...
then we got a flight!! YIPPY!!
We took a C-17 to....
Don't our seats look comfy??
Good thing we only had to sit in them for 30-45 mins during take off and landing!

Then we slept...

We slept next to the cargo!

We stopped in Gander, Newfoundland for fuel..

Thankfully, we were able to lay down on our sleeping bags and sleep the rest of the way to Germany!
It was VERY loud and there were NONE of the "regular" comforts. No drink cart, only one bathroom w/ no sink, only two windows on the plane (up towards the ceiling), etc.
But we made it safe and sound.

As soon as we went through customs we jumped on a flight to Aviano, Italy.

This flight was more "typical"... Except there were only aprox 20 civilians on the plane of 275 people. It was short and cramped. On the military flights we dont have to abide by the "regular" FAA rules. Uniformed personell have weapons on them and we are all allowed to bring food and drinks. Drinks are "discouraged", but Stephen had 2 16oz water bottles in his backpack and they said, "No big deal, he's a kid. He can keep his water."
We are now in Italy and LOVING visiting with the Durrett family! My neices and nephew are so BIG! They are all so cute and the kids are loving spending time playing! 
 I can't wait to see Sam & Anaia! For now we are resting and trying to get over jet lag.
There is a 6 hour time difference so we are all messed up!