Monthly Archives: January 2017

Sicily, Day 16 – December 2, 2016

Here are the Photos of our trip!

We arranged for a van to take us to the airport with five of our co-travelers after breakfast. Ah, yes, the final breakfast had every food imaginable, including gluten free options! We had absolutely no problems with our flight  from Catania to Rome or our flight from Rome to JFK. There were short lines at Customs, and our luggage arrived quickly.  Our driver was ready for us. Home, Sweet Home!

Continue reading Sicily, Day 16 – December 2, 2016

Sicily, Day 15 – December 1, 2016

Nick  and I awoke at 5 AM and decided to eat the second half of yesterday’s lunch sandwich. We weren’t surprised that we weren’t hungry at breakfast time. We packed and began our journey to Catania, the last city of our tour.

Our first stop on the way was a visit to the Museo Storica della Sbarco in Sicilia 1943, a World War II museum that has an extensive collection of actual memorabilia, photos, and newsreel footage of the events of Operation Husky, the invasion of Sicily from Africa by Allied forces. Continue reading Sicily, Day 15 – December 1, 2016

Sicily, Day 14 – November 30, 2016

For the first time in the entire trip, I didn’t sleep well. I heard a  constant sound through the night  that reminded me of an old percolating coffee pot. In the morning, we saw that below our window was a courtyard with a  water fountain that was responsible for the strange sound.

Because we had changed hotels, we were faced with new breakfast  selections. The breakfast included  sweet choices such as granola and six other cereal selections,  fresh fruit including apples and pears, chocolate pudding, and cakes. Continue reading Sicily, Day 14 – November 30, 2016

Sicily, Day 10 – November 26, 2016

We had an early departure because we had a long drive ahead of us. Our bus was parked five blocks away, so we were again grateful that the Rick Steves Company insists that its tour participants take only as much luggage as they can handle themselves. Once on the bus, Susanna received a phone call  from the hotel saying that one of the room keys had not been returned. Nick checked his pockets. Uh oh! He made a mad dash back to the hotel and then ran the whole way back to the bus. Off we went southeast to Agrigento.

The first Trinacria—the emblem of Sicily.

Our first stop in Agrigento was its Museo Archeologico. Continue reading Sicily, Day 10 – November 26, 2016

Sicily, Day 7 – November 23, 2016

We learned that in addition to our tour director, Susanna, we would have a local guide in many of the towns we were to visit. Today’s guide was Jackie Alio, a Sicilian who lived in California for years and writes books about Sicily. With Jackie, we walked through the old Jewish neighborhood of the city. There the street signs are in  Italian, Hebrew and Arabic. Continue reading Sicily, Day 7 – November 23, 2016

Sicily, Day 6- November 22, 2016

Our tour was to start at 3 PM that afternoon. At breakfast we met another couple who  had arrived early, Barbara and Bob from California. We  discovered that Bob is of Arberesh ancestry, as is Nick. Although NIck’s father was from Calabria, there is a large Arberesh community in Sicily, where Bob’s ancestors originated.  We have never met another Arberesh in our travels before.

Nick and I decided to try to walk to the Archives to try to find someone who could help me with research. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find the address we had. Instead, we decided to see one of the highlighted sites of Palermo, the Cathedral, which was about half a mile away. Continue reading Sicily, Day 6- November 22, 2016

Sicily, Day 2 November 18, 2016

We awoke at 9 AM! We were amazed by that until we realized that our bodies were on Connecticut time where it was 3 AM.  Last night, my cousin Giuseppe told us not to miss the view from the rooftop breakfast room of our  hotel. Giuseppe is a health inspector, so he is familiar with every food-serving institution in Palermo. He was so right! The view was fantastic! We could see the entire panorama of Palermo, including the sea, the mountains, many ancient cathedrals, and several apartment buildings whose dwellers were hanging  their laundry out to dry. Continue reading Sicily, Day 2 November 18, 2016

Sicily Day 1- November 17, 2016

Our plane landed in Rome, and we made our way to the gate for our flight to Palermo. I realized that November 17 was the 109th anniversary of  the birth of my uncle, John Nucatola. A member of  the Basketball Hall of Fame, Uncle John  traveled around the world to promote basketball.  In addition, his wife introduced Nick to me, so I have very fond memories of them both! I wondered if Uncle John had ever been to Palermo. We so enjoyed our 2005 trip there, and I  looked forward to seeing my Palermitan relatives again.  We would be having dinner with two of them that evening. Continue reading Sicily Day 1- November 17, 2016