Italy - A Day in the Park


When my friend John Lucas and I decided to make our first trip to Europe in 1984, we never planned to visit the seaside town of Brindisi in southern Italy.   And we never would have guessed that we would spend an entire day in a park.

We were in Venice and made a last-minute decision to head to Greece.  The only way to get there using our Eurail pass was to take an overnight train to Brindisi, spend the day in Brindisi and then board the ferry to Patras, Greece.   The only problem was that we would have about 12 hours to kill in Brindisi.

We arrived early in the morning and found the market in the photo below.   We bought some fruit for breakfast.  

The Market in Brindisi, Italy

We didn't have a lot of Italians liras and didn't want to exchange any more.  It was expensive to exchange and we were leaving the country.  We didn't have a credit card.    We headed to a nearby park to eat our breakfast.    Once there, we met two American girls, who were also waiting for the ferry.

We spent hours exchanging stories and chatting with them.  Then, the four of us decided to walk around.  We explored the area near the park.  Finally, one of us decided we needed to get some wine.   We bought a bottle for less than two dollars.   We enjoyed it and the girls decided to buy another bottle.   We continued our conversation and nursed the second bottle of wine.   We were people watching and exchanging travel stories.  It was laid back and fun.   John and I had been traveling non-stop for two weeks and this was the first time we had a chance to "do nothing." 

Finally, it was dinner time.  We decided we should see if we had enough money left for a pizza.    John and I each bought one slice.  I remember I bought a slice that had an egg on it.  I had never seen egg on a pizza before.    

We walked back to the area where the market had been that morning.  It was now closed.  It started to get dark.  We decided to head to the ferry terminal and wait there.   We finally boarded with our two new friends and spent the next 16 hours crossing the Adriatic Sea.   

A sunny day in an Italian park with two bottles of wine and two new friends.  It ended up being both a memorable and relaxing day.   


One more note:  When I returned after my trip, I did a radio interview.   It is linked below.   The part about Italy begins at 30:45.  

Dates of Travel

  • March, 1984
  • August, 2007

Places Visited

  • Venice
  • Brindisi
  • Rome
  • Florence

Radio Interview



This post is part of my series "One Photo - One Country."  I'm am selecting one photo and writing one story from every country I have visited.   Your comments and questions are welcome.  

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