Italy travel diary/travelogue

Stormy times ahead

Day 12, 30 Aug 2001

That imposing mountain. That 1-pixel dot is the church! Thunder. Lightening. Lots of it. That's how the day started. Looking out of the balcony, the flashes of light appeared to come from every direction. I decided to sit out front with the video camera at the ready. If there were to be any lightening strikes here, it would happen directly opposite at the peak of the mount, and would be very impressive. I was to be disappointed though. The rumblings continued for some hours but never got too close.

The waterfront at Torbole. The wind surfers were behind me With limited options, we decided to go to Torbole, the next town down to the south of Riva. Torbole is a Mecca of sorts for wind sports enthusiasts. It was clear that this was a top spot for wind surfers, and it is used as a venue for major competitions. We were not here for the surf though, just the best tuna pizza in Garda (from the Hotel Benaco).

Malcesine and Monte Baldo

With the weather dry but threatening to rain, we continued on to Malcesine (pronounced Mal-Chesnay). The shops here were to be found in amongst the numerous narrow cobbled streets, and were full of character. Away from the old streets is the cable car ride (known as Funivia). This takes you up the mount (Mount Baldo) for a view over the whole of Malcesine and beyond. Well, that's what would normally happen, but it was overcast, so we lost sight of the town just after halfway up. Once we arrived at the peak, it was like being in another world. The view below was obscured by low-lying cloud, and the sound was completely deadened. There was no reflection of the sound of your own voice at all, and no other sound save the cowbells of the herd that was grazing nearby.

There was a small amount of snow here too, and in the cooler months, this was evidently a skiing venue, judging by the currently dormant chair lifts. No skiing today though, for us or the cows.

Interior shot 1Interior shot 2Lago model What there was, though, was a collection of the dullest postcards I have ever seen. So dull that I had to buy a few, many of which appeared to have been there since the seventies judging by the yellowed state of the cardboard. To see these beauties in full, just click on one of the thumbnail images to the right.