2006 Day 3. A Day of Rest

Most of the city of Bologna seemed closed down on Sunday as the duties and customs of Catholicism ruled the day. It had rained most of the night, but dawn found the beautiful billowing clouds retreating and the warm Italian sun back on the job. Lorraine and I walked the neighborhood in the afternoon and discovered a Caffe that was open near a small public park, so we had a couple of calzone for lunch and washed it all down with acqua minerale con gas (sparkling mineral water).

We found an intriguing open gateway off the main street near a church and decided to see what was beyond. We had discovered the local cemetery. It was a vast complex of courtyards containing thousands of mausoleums and gravesites. It went on for acre after acre. All of this expansive geography was undetectable from the street as tall brick walls surrounded the entire compound. So despite its size, unless you had prior knowledge of this place's existence, you would never have known it was here.

We found that it is typical for families who attend mass on Sunday to then do the “cemetery crawl”, as one local put it. Affirming this practice was the presence of many locals who had brought flowers to decorate their ancestor's resting place.

Evening came soon after more naps. We then had dinner at the Ristorante next door to the hotel with several other Americans here for the Giro. In conversation we discovered that one of the couples dining with us was going to be attending the next day’s English language Ducati factory and museum tour with us as well. More significantly, they said they rented a four-door car with plenty of room and offered us a ride to Rimini, after the tour. We jumped at the slightly engineered offer, as it would save us the trouble of cabbing to the train station and schlepping all our bags to Rimini via the Inner City line.

It was an easy day with more wonderful food and fine weather. Sometimes a vacation is a good time to do nothing, especially considering all that was on the agenda for us the upcoming week.