Nearly Karaoke

Welcome to the regions of Emilia Romagna, Marche, and Umbria in Italy. It’s been absolutely gorgeous. Before arriving, I did a presentation on the food and wine in these regions. Of course, this made me extremely exited to begin the journey.

Just on the drive down, the stop we made reminded me a lot of France. We had lunch on the upper level of a rest stop. This was my meal:

It was a meat (?) stuffed ravioli with focaccia bread. I had some mineral water as well.

For the rest of the drive, I slept. I tried to read for a while, but because it was raining, it was so peaceful, thus, easy to sleep. Also, something about riding in cars makes me sleepy. It doesn’t matter the car or the distance.

First stop: Rimini: located in Emilia Romagna, Italy

During the trip so far, I’ve been rooming with Katie and Lexie. When we arrived, we decided to drop our stuff off in the room and head out to explore the city before dinner. Nearly getting lost trying to find the center of town, we wandered down streets and through parks and finally came upon the famous arch. Unfortunately, I didn’t bring my camera when we went out, but here are some pictures I found:

We found a couple of gorgeous churches, wandered in, admired the splendor of it all. We also found the main bridge that has been around for ages. We walked across and found ourselves meandering down narrow streets lined with charming, colorful houses.

Eventually, we headed back to get ready for dinner in the hotel.

We had a quick 3 course meal: seafood pasta, fish and potatoes, and a dessert.

This was a delicious vanilla custard-type dessert (Panna Cotta) with a raspberry sauce and a touch of cocoa powder. I wasn’t expecting it to be that good, but it was.

After dinner was when the party really began, though.

Tyler and Makoto wanted to go out, so an hour later, the 5 of us headed out in search of a bar. Passing by the “Hobo Bar” we came across a British Pub. This drew everyone in. At first it seemed like it was full, but as we went in further, we realized there was a whole other room filled with empty booths and live music. This music wasn’t just any music. It was classic, American everything. It ranged from the groovy ’60’s to Adele, from a Grease mash-up to “I’m a Believer”. It was a karaoke track with a couple singing. The man, however, played 4 instruments which he played along with the tracks: sax, flute, recorder, and guitar. Katie, Tyler and I each ordered a beer, and surprisingly, but not so surprisingly, Makoto ordered a coke, a burger, and fries.
Enjoying the music tremendously, we began to sing along, clap along, and even dance along. The performers, noticing our enjoyment, began to point to us and sing. We had a blast. We may have been responsible for some people leaving, but you know what? we had a lot of fun. We may not have looked the part, but we were completely and totally sober. I’m sure many of the people in the bar that night would have been shocked to hear we each only had one drink. (Well…Makoto did have 2 cokes)

Eventually, it was getting a little late, so Lexie headed back to the room to get some sleep. The 4 of us who stayed kept on jammin’. As soon as we thought that it couldn’t get any better, it did. They would play a song that we’d completely forgotten we love. We sang our hearts out and didn’t care what anyone thought. We got the looks of support and the confused looks. We looked American, but that was okay. It was American music, and we knew the words.  The only thing missing were the words on the t.v. screens.

Taking a closer look at the menu later on, we realized that it was the first British pub in all of Italy. Then, we saw this:

What’s wrong with this picture?

Vegetarians usually don’t eat meat.


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