Saturday, August 27, 2016

Days 4 and 5 - Asolo, Bassano di Grappa, Marostica and a painting day

This post really should be titled "the big lunch"!  Heading to the foothills of the Dolomite mountains, we first visited the city of Bassano di Grappa, famous for ceramics, grappa and the Palladio designed bridge over the Brenta River.  Before heading to the center of Marostica we stopped at a somewhat unassuming restaurant called 'I Rusteghi', Via Stroppari,8-36063.  It was a feast of gigantic proportions.  We thought it was just for pizza.  None of us knew it was a 5-course feast with all the wine, etc. you could drink and was part of our package. The quality as well as the quantity was superlative! This may be the most memorable part of the trip.  I have to say it was a little too early in the day for me to eat so much.  We had a number extra lunches on this trip, all very special.
After a quick stop to the town to see where the biennial human chess match takes place, we were off to the beautiful medieval hillside town of Asolo where only 5 of us made the arduous climb to the mountain top.  (Don't do it, there was nothing much up there.)
The first painting day.  After breakfast most of the painters disbursed around the grounds and painted, some did one before lunch and one after lunch, others relaxed, read, swam in the pool.  I'm in the relaxed group.  There was a crit before dinner and there was a good number of paintings presented. I love the fresh food we eat here in Italy.

This was the unassuming facade of the great "Big Lunch" restaurant.
The photos above are taken during that great multi-course lunch.  

This sweet lady picked me up along the road and drove me to the base of the mountain trail.  She didn't speak any English.
Top of the mountain.
Attendant who wanted about 2 euro to go into this empty building at the end of the path up the mountain, like the size of a small park, to climb up two flights of stairs which would put me at the viewing tower.  No, I didn't pay. I could see just fine from where I was. 
The top of the mountain was just around this bend.  They did a nice job of improving the path here.  Did I mention it was in the mid-90's?  Hot.

We sat in a sidewalk cafe here in the center of Asolo.
Margaret's painting tours are in two sections.  I was in the first section.  The second section was here at the time of the chess game and was to attend it.  We saw the preparations being done.
 Ponte Vecchio (Italian, meaning Old bridge)
People on the bridge which was designed by the architect Andrea Palladio in 1569 .

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