John Edward Cooper’s Notes

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Monday 26 August 2013

[Sunday 25 August 2013]

07:00–17:00 Rapallo—tender to shore

Day 238 Monday 26 August Lamentations 3:37-5:22


This was the Cruise News for today:









And this was the information sheet Explore Ashore, which was produced for each of our ports of call:





Janet was up just after 6am, and I followed suit after she completed her ablutions. The regular morning queasiness passed off, indicating that yesterday’s feeling ill had not persisted; we went up for breakfast ca.8am, and I had orange juice, Rice Krispies, bacon, sausage and baked beans, some sliced grapefruit — and was it today I had a doughnut with coffee?… Back to the cabin — then a little before 9am we followed the signs to where the hatch had been opened in the side of the boat, passed the desk where we were checked out by the little man swiping each passenger’s plastic card on his computer’s card-reader — my picture appeared on the screen — descended the sloping gangway to a little floating jetty against which the tender boat bobbed, and were helped aboard. The journey to shore was no rougher, I guess, than the boat trip across Lake Garda had been.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 08:59:48
Boarding the tender to go ashore


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:00:38
View of Rapallo from the tender


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:02:38
View forward


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:16:34
Leaving the tender at the northernmost mole in the public port

The day was sunny and already quite hot as we walked the length of Lungomare Vittorio Veneto as it arced round the bay.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:20:40
Monument to Christopher Columbus


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:31:16
Antico Castello


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:34:20
Antico Castello


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:36:04
The Thomson Dream, seen from the same point as 09:34:20

We eschewed a seaside café just beyond the Antico Castello because the menu prices were so high, and went to another a street or two back from there. The subdued, yellowish colour of the Italian-produced Fanta orange drink that I had was in striking contrast to the bright orange of the north African-produced Fanta served on the ship. The former felt healthier to drink because the coloration was more natural-looking.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 09:42:18
Refreshments at a nearby bar

We planned first to visit the nearby church of San Francesco d’Assisi, then walk to the Funivia station and go to the summit of Montallegro. Janet makes a point of covering head and shoulders with her babushka-style headscarf when visiting sacred sites.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:09:28
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:12:42
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:14:32
San Francesco d’Assisi

Particularly charming, we found, was a painting of a schoolboy — in the short trousers, tank top and knee-high socks familiar from schooldays in the 1950s — being helped along a narrow plank over a gorge by an angel.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:15:30
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:16:08
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:17:00
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:17:54
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:19:32
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:20:00
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:21:40
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:23:30
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:23:56
San Francesco d’Assisi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 10:25:02
San Francesco d’Assisi

After that we followed the Explore Ashore map, ascending by a footpath not far from the church to a road, Via Don Giovanni Minzoni. When at length the road went through a gate into private property, we figured that things had changed since the map was drawn, so backtracked a short way, and turned — right, since we were now facing downwards; left, if we’d turned on the way up. (We didn’t realise that the map was very large-scale, and that we’d gone way beyond the Funivia station.) When we saw the Funivia cables extending below us, we thought that the station marked on the map must be an intermediate station, and that a lower stage of the Funivia must have been added to the one shown on the map. Reinforcing that notion was a steeply rising footpath with steps off to the right, signed as “Via Funivia”, which we mounted. At a point where the path levelled off and there was a turn to the left, Janet feeling overheated and weary decided to sit in the shade while I walked along this next stretch to scout out the way.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:04:30
Lost on “Via Funivia” — looking back the way we came up


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:07:22
View back from that level


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:07:22
View back from that level: detail, with the Thomson Dream visible


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:07:38
Zoomed in view of the Thomson Dream

Continuing that way didn’t seem to hold out any hope of getting us where we wanted to go, so we abandoned it and went back down a considerable proportion of the road we’d come up.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:13:14
As if to mock us: the Funivia


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:21:52
Going back the way we came: Ch. San Bartolomeo


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:27:30
House with fresco on front wall

We turned right, off Via Don Giovanni Minzoni into a road continuing downwards. Janet stopped a man on a motorbike to ask him the way. He spoke English and said we were on the right road, but it would be shorter if we went down steps to the lower level of the road. (The road goes off then back again round a hairpin bend.) We took his advice, and when we got to the bottom, there he was, to check we’d not gone wrong, and to point out the entrance to the station. This was not the only example of extraordinary kindness from strangers that we received on this holiday. [I’m completing this entry on 19 September.]


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:37:12
Short cut between the upper and lower levels of Via P. Canessa


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:41:42
At last! The entrance to the Stazione Funivia

Having finally located the Funivia station, we decided that we needed refreshment after all our exertions in the heat, so we crossed the bridge over Torrente San Francesco — actually, just a trickle, but equipped with a wide channel and high concrete-walled sides, so it must become a torrent after the winter snows or rains — and found a place not far along Via Fratelli Betti, more like a convenience store with a bar. We were provided with a small bowl of peanuts and one of crisps. Janet was dieting today, so I had them, and didn’t need lunch.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 11:53:28
First, though: refreshments

Then we re-crossed the bridge and returned to the Funivia station. (Bridge, and banner over the station entrance — though the way to the latter is completely foreshortened — are visible in the photo below.)


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:27:40
Torrente San Francesco

We were urged to enter the car quickly, though we were the only passengers, I guess because the up and down cars were on one loop of cable, and there were passengers waiting in the car at the upper station.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:32:06
Funivia: We were the only passengers.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:32:34

The other car, when it passed midway, flashed by unexpectedly low, which is why it is partly out of shot in the photo below.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:35:52
Passing the other car


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:36:30
Looking back at the other car


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:36:50

As we approached the upper station of the funivia a white basilica on the summit came into view, but by the time I’d got the camera ready it had disappeared behind the trees.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:39:16
Approaching the terminus

Someone departing from the sanctuary site told us that it was closed till 2.30pm, but we went to look at the outside anyway. There’s no way round to the right, because the structure is on the hillside, but we went beyond it on the left side.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:47:32
Nostra Signora di Montallegro


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:49:10
Nostra Signora di Montallegro


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:51:54


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:52:14
The Thomson Dream


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:52:42


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:55:10


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:56:38
Drinking fountain


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:21:48
Millstones and text, at the exit of the Nostra Signora di Montallegro site — photographed on the way back


Monday 26 August 2013 — 12:59:46
Looking back at the campanile of Nostra Signora di Montallegro


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:00:04
Nearby shrine

There was a path paved with very rough stones leading away across the hillside, which I explored for a few hundred yards while Janet sat in the shade. Up till a very few months ago, I’d not have been able to walk on such uneven ground — even cobblestones pressing through the heels, especially the right, of my shoes would have caused pain — but today it presented no difficulty. When I returned she was looking at a tiny lizard, which can’t have been more than four inches long, including the tail. His larger cousin, seen afterwards, was perhaps six inches long.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:00:50
Rough path


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:10:36
Tiny lizard


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:12:08
The same tiny lizard


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:16:18
Watching the lizard


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:18:22
Butterfly seen from the same location


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:20:20
Nearby larger lizard


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:23:10
Leaving the Nostra Signora di Montallegro site the way we came in


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:34:12
Returning by the Funivia


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:35:12
The other car flashes past.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:36:44
Views from the descending Funivia


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:38:08
Views from the descending Funivia


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:40:14
Back at the lower Stazione Funivia

We walked back into town along the same Via Fratelli Betti that the bar/shop had been on.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:49:14
Railway bridge on Via Fratelli Betti

Crossing over the road that Via Fratelli Betti abuts, into Piazza Grosso, we had a refreshment stop in the square under the awning that can be seen behind the right building in the photo below.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 13:50:46
Piazza Grosso

Both the churches at the far end of the square were closed; there seemed to be refurbishment work going on inside the first one, Santissima Trinità.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:12:06
Bas-relief on the wall of Santissima Trinità


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:12:22
Santissima Trinità


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:13:18
Santissima Trinità


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:14:38
San Stefano


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:16:50
Santissima Trinità (left) and San Stefano (right)

We left the square on its south-west corner and went along Corso Italia to look at the basilica. It too was closed. Despite my feet being much, much better of late, they were by now quite sore.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:18:52
Basilica S.S. Gervasio e Protasio


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:19:42
Basilica S.S. Gervasio e Protasio


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:21:20
Basilica S.S. Gervasio e Protasio


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:21:54
Basilica S.S. Gervasio e Protasio


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:22:18
Basilica S.S. Gervasio e Protasio


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:22:58
Basilica S.S. Gervasio e Protasio


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:24:06
Piazza C. Cavour.
Note the trompe l’oeil frescoes


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:26:06
Corner of Corso Italia and Corso Goffredo Mameli with campanile of the Basilica visible

Our route back to the ship is documented photographically below.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:27:12
Via Fratelli Cairoll


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:28:16
Porta delle Saline


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:28:56
Manhole cover in Via Fratelli Cairoll


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:29:38
Piazza IV Novembre


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:33:54
Monument to Christopher Columbus

On the far side of the footbridge whose rail can just be seen in the photo below was a beggar who’d been there when we came the other way this morning, and I gave him a €1 or €2 coin (I can’t remember which). As one can see from the timings of the photos we got a tender boat back straight away. They let us on the already pretty full boat, but others behind us had to wait for the next one.


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:34:56
Via Dante Alighieri


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:38:44
Boarding the tender at Molo Duca degli Abruzzi


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:40:08


Monday 26 August 2013 — 14:52:54
Disembarking from the tender

Copied the photos (2) and video-clips (2) from 24 August, and today’s photos (84), from the camera (14:24–14:27). Edited the two photos from 24 August with Photoshop, and made a PowerPoint presentation (14:41–15:42). There’s a discrepancy between the times on the photos and the times given by the computer, so I guess an hour needs to be added to the latter ones. So assuming that the last time should be “16:42”, just after that I went up on deck to take these last photos of Rapallo. Janet wrote: “At 5pm [John] went to take photos of the boat setting off for Livorno.”


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:51:04
Views of Rapallo from the ship


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:51:24
Views of Rapallo from the ship


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:52:14
Views of Rapallo from the ship


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:52:22
Views of Rapallo from the ship


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:52:32
Views of Rapallo from the ship


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:53:02
Views of Rapallo from the ship: Nostra Signora di Montallegro


Monday 26 August 2013 — 16:54:20
Views of Rapallo from the ship

“After that,” Janet added, “we went to the Destination Services centre to confirm tomorrow’s pick-up time, then to the library,[i] then I suggested we have a drink in one of the bars and watch the boat’s progress. Just before 6pm we returned to the cabin as I wanted a quick wash-and-brush-up, then we went for dinner in the Lido.”…
[i] I wondered whether one could get free internet access from the desktop computers in there, but it appeared not.

“We returned to the cabin at ca.7pm,” Janet wrote, “so I could update this [journal] whilst it was all fresh in my mind.” (As before, therefore, an hour needs to be added to the timings given by the computer which follow.) Copied the additional seven photos from the camera (18:25–18:26). Started a PowerPoint presentation of today’s photos (18:27). Started editing the photos and arranging them in the presentation one by one (four of them, 18:33–18:54; forty-three of them, including one cropped duplicate, 20:17–23:05). Janet accounts for the gap between “18:54”, i.e. 19:54 (7.54pm), and “20:17”, i.e. 21:17 (9.17pm): “At ca.8pm we set off for the Broadway Show Lounge for the “Modelled By Motown” show. Wow! It was brilliant. Good songs, good performers — dancers and singers. It was very professional and highly enjoyable. Lasted ca. 45 minutes. I thought it would finish at 10.30pm (the start time of the second performance) and had decided we’d have to leave by 9.30pm as we’ll have to be up at 6am tomorrow morning for Pisa. So I was delighted we’d been able to see and hear it all. Again, as I’d noticed at the Josh Groban concert, and firstly at the Kenny Ball show ages ago, we were the only people who were physically moved by the music. We seemed to be the only ones singing along, swaying, tapping our feet, etc. How very bizarre! I just don’t understand that at all.” She went on to mention the time — “10.30pm” — and that she was about to get ready for bed. Since I have to add an hour to all the computer timings, I didn’t head for bed till after 00:05.

[Tuesday 27 August 2013]



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