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Where have all the umbrella's gone?

Recently we decided on a whim to visit Grottammare, Italy which is just an hour's drive south from our farmhouse, We have been driving by it for the past 5 years and always seem to be in a hurry and never had the time to stop. So Justice was busy in school, the sun was out and we didn't know how many more sunny days we had left this fall so off we went just the two of us. It's a lovely drive 30 mins from here in Colmurano where we live to the Adriatic Sea then we hop on the superstrada #14 going south and spend the next 30 mins admiring the beautiful blue sea. Just one month ago the beach was lined with thousand's of lounge chairs and people enjoying the sea water but now it's all been put away for the season.

As with most things beautiful in Italy you must always be looking up because there is an amazing small medieval village on almost every hill in every direction. Grottammare is one of them, with it's rustic houses and small streets you will be transported back in time. Since we are American's and have not fully adapted to the afternoon pranza experience, meaning having a big meal and taking a nap from 12:30-4:30 everyday. We tend to show up places in the middle of the afternoon when no one is awake and have the unique experience of visiting empty and quiet streets which works for me personally. It makes taking pictures a whole lot easier not having to wait for people to get out of the shot I really want!

In the 1500's the village was conquered by a pirate Ulcinj, it was then fortified with a large tower now called "the battle". Currently the tower is a small museum which was closed while we were there of course, so next time. In the nearby Piazzetta Peretti there is an exceptional view from the balcony of the building that houses the historic Teatro dell'Arancio, near which stands the Clock Tower. Also worth visiting the Church of Santa Lucia (1597) which was built by Camilla Peretti in memory of his brother Sisto V Felice Peretti who became Pope.

Visiting a new village is always an adventure for us and since we are real-estate junkies our brains switch into overdrive automatically. There was an empty historic building with hugh arched window's and amazing architecture overlooking the sea which had been a restaurant and was for sale. I quickly had to drag Rick away because both of our brains start visualising opportunity and we are already crazy over expended with our current properties here in Italy and Costa Rica. I told him "just don't think about it" haha!

Grottammare is just one of the thousands of small historic villages here in Italy, each with different history and value. We could spend our entire lives here in Italy and never experience them all. Justice was not happy that we visited a castle without him that day but as he know's there is another one just around the corner, plus I reminded him we live in part of the castle here in Colmurano. Another castle checked off the list and only thousands more to go.

In just 10 days we are switching from castles to cruise-ships, look for our next adventure as we board the MSC Orchestra from Genoa, Italy on a 22 day trip all the way down to Buenos Aires, Argentina and everything in between. We will then spend 8 days experiencing Buenos Aires and board yet another ship with Holland America the Zaandam for another 14 days cruising around Cape Horn. We are sooooo excited to show this part of the world to Justice, rather than just read about it.

Before you say out loud what you are thinking, "no, we have not won the lottery". The types of cruises that we do are typically called repostioning cruises where the cruise line takes the ship from one part of the world to the other for the change of seasons. They are the cheapest way to cruise but the cruise amenties are exactly the same, only issue is fitting it into your time frame to match theirs. Plus MSC cruise lines lets kids cruise for free, because they are an Italian cruise line so it's all about the family. So be sure to check out our Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter accounts for all the pictures we will be posting of our trip.

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