In my last post, I explained how getting to Italy was a little bumpier than we’d hoped. But we finally arrived in Brindisi, Italy at the Salento Airport.
Based on the rest of our experience, I half expected them to turn us away at customs! 😆 But alas, they did not.
After a twenty-minute taxi ride, we arrived at the beautiful steps to our one-night stay in Brindisi. This was merely a place to crash before we started our journey the next day and it was such a relief to drop our bags off at the room.
We were physically exhausted, but our brains were wide awake at 9 pm local time — but noon to us back at home.
Fortunately, Italians eat later than we do so after a bit of wandering we settled into an outdoor table at Brunda Pizzeria and had the first amazing meal of our trip. And no, I don’t have pictures of the food once again. 🤦♀️
We shared the following pizzas:
- Margherita (Which would become our barometer for appraising a pizza place because Annie would begin to insist on getting it each time.)
- Diavola (Essentially pepperoni — because when you finally sit down to dinner at 10 pm with children after three days of travel, you order what makes them — and you — feel comfortable. 😁)
- Cantinone (Buffalo mozzarella cheese, fresh porcini mushrooms, truffles, and spun-curd Burrata cow’s milk cheese.)
By the time we ate our meal, it was nearly 11:00 pm and our kids are usually in bed by 8:00 at home. Annie was crashing, so she and I rushed back to the hotel (through the rain, while jumping over puddles!) to get ready for bed while the boys settled up with the bill.
As an early riser, the plan all along had been that I would adjust to Italy time — which ideally would work out well as we were moving nine hours ahead. Going to bed at midnight instead of 9 pm would mean I would sleep in a little, right?
I woke up at six am the following day, which really is sleeping in for me — but not enough to offset all the travel exhaustion and staying up late trekking around to find pizza.
But incredibly, I sat quietly beneath a window in the strange room next door to the bedroom (so I wouldn’t wake up Scott and the kids) and I legit heard a man sing loudly in Italian down by the bay. And a mouthwatering scent of pastries wafted in through the window. I felt like I was in a movie — except for the nasty window sill and screen that I tried (and failed) to video the scene through. 🤣
When we walked into the hotel room, Max saw this side room and immediately said, “That’s where we’re gonna have all our nightmares.” 😆 I swear, he’s funnier than a lot of adults.
We had a train to catch so it wasn’t too long before we had to wake the kids up, which was painful because they were out COLD.
Finally, after the train and then a bus ride, we made it to our first official town of the trip — OTRANTO, ITALY.
Up Next in Otranto: I’ll share how we used Google translate to visit with our incredible host, Antonio — especially when the window overlooking our balcony broke!