Beautiful Pisa

Cart and I were in Pisa during the weekend for mission day – an Ingress event where you explore a town, hack on specific portals to create missions for your profile, like this one :

And when you think of Pisa, what is the first thing that comes to mind? The leaning tower, of course. But like many others, before this trip, I thought that there wasn’t that much things to see apart from the tower.

But as we walked through the areas, as suggested from the missions, I saw that quite a number of things that I thought was interesting.

Like this small church which we saw right next to the river, with the white and grey stones and the statues on the top, which made it look unique – I don’t think that I’ve ever seen anything like that before.

I really find this door interesting, with the heads facing right towards you, which to me, is reminiscent of something from the Game of Thrones.

There is a river passing through Pisa, and sights like these is what makes me think that I’m definitely in Europe – the shape of the buildings as well as the mountain behind it.

It was such a lovely day,Ā and coupled with the beautiful early autumn temperature, it made a very pleasant walk.

And at length, we reached the heart of Pisa, the Piazza del duomo and it’s such a magnificent sight.

The buildings look so pristine and majestic, and it’s easy to feel inspired here.

P.s. If you’re interested, I made a Pisa Instastory so you can watch little videos of my trip there šŸ™‚

Visiting a Cat Cafe in Rome

Laura isĀ an interesting person who I met by chance many years ago while participating in the Maratona di Roma. We’ve kept in touch through social media. She was in Rome earlier this year and we decided to catch up. Romeow Cat Bistrot

(Picture stolen from Laura)

Since she was game enough to try a vegan joint and loves cats, I decided to bring her to the cat cafe in Garbatella. I’ve never been here before and have always wanted to visit, so it was a good opportunity for the both of us.

Garbatella by itself is an interesting area, so many things to see here, easy to reach by the metro and full of colourful murals such as this one : Porto Fluviale

Before you know it, we reached the cafe. From the outside, it looked quite unassuming. But when you get in, it looked so cosy and inviting, especially with their resident cats.

I’ve been to other cat cafe, but most of theĀ cats there seemed anti social – shying away when you try to approach them. Which is understandable when you think about the number of guests who have tried to cuddle with them day after day. But the cats here were amazingly chill and adorable. They didn’t mind you cuddling with them. Romeow Cat Bistrot

Almost everywhere you turn, there would be something interesting to see, making this cafe extremely instagrammable.

Laura and I were quite hungry then, so we ordered the food which looked interesting. And between us, we had :

Tempura allā€™erba cipollina con maionese allā€™aceto balsamico e salsa spicy Romeow Cat Bistrot

Patatas Bravas Romeow Cat Bistrot

Dahl croccante su salsa pink raw allo zenzero Romeow Cat Bistrot

Riso rosso al mango cocco con broccoli e cavolfiore saltati al peperoncino e lime Romeow Cat Bistrot

(Picture stolen from Laura)

Mousse cake Romeow Cat Bistrot

The food here was delicious albeit on the pricey side with the price of each dish starting fromĀ 7 euro. But I guess it was okay for the onceĀ as a while treat. I especially liked Laura’s rice and would definitely get that the next time I’m there. Romeow Cat Bistrot

And in the middle of our meal, I had an interesting talk with Laura – what she’s been up to, her ventures and what she’s been doing during her free time. IĀ admire her inĀ that she’s so courageous, being brave in travelling to different countries for example,Ā and trying to set up her photography business.

If you haven’t seen her photographs, come and take a peek here. She’s very very good!

To end here is an instagram stories montage of our trip there šŸ™‚

Romeow Cat Bistrot
Via Francesco Negri, 15, 00154 Roma

Happy Befana day!

The 6th of January is a holiday in Italy to symbolise the baptism of Jesus. It is also a celebration to mark the visit of the 3 wise men to Jesus.

In Italy, there is the story of the befana, a housekeeper who looks like a witch because of her broom. She was invited to travel with the 3 wise men, and declined but she changed her mind at the last minute. But by then, it was too late, and she couldn’t find them and in the end decided to gift all the other children instead – candiesĀ for the good ones and coal for the naughty. Which are stuffed into stockings like these :

So if you’re in Italy at any time during this week, you’ll probably see a lot of these, or something similar, around.

Last night, Cart and I were atĀ Piazza Navona to see the decorations as well as the carnival there. Usually there will be loads of things to see there – people selling the Befana toys, giant dougnutsĀ and game kiosks.

Unfortunately, only half of the piazza was filled and it didn’t feel as festive as usual. Perhaps it was because of the very cold weather that we are experiencing currently, but whatever it was, it made me feel kind of sad because when I first arrived in Rome about 8 years ago, the Befana was a big deal, even more so than Christmas.

There was a parade nearĀ San Pietro this morning, which would have been interesting to see – with over a thousand costumed figures. Befana Italy, Rome, Viva la befana

I had all the intention to see it, but then changed my mind when the temperature dropped down to 1 degree when I woke up thisĀ morning. Brr … too cold to go out on the scooter by myself.

So here is a compromise, someone else’s video of last year’s Viva La Befana!

Ok, no need to go to the one next year. I’ve already seen it šŸ˜›