Monday, October 17, 2011

Saturday 15 October - arrival at Olbia

Pictures posted October 26

The sea was surprisingly smooth and we were able to get a reasonable night's sleep. The shower worked well. We were about an hour late into Olbia, the sunrise was hidden behind a bank of clouds. We had a cool latte on the boat and waited a long time for it to dock. Luciano went missing – it turned out that he was waiting for us at the garage exit while we were waiting for him in the saloon.
Approaching Olbia - passing the mussel beds.

A young lady came up to me and asked in a New Zealand accent “Do you know how to get off this boat?” My first reaction was to say something like “You get out the same way you got in,” but in New Zealand the ferries usually have a passenger gangplank. We me up with her a little later looking for the No. 9 bus stop which Colin found for her. She was taking the train to Cagliari. As I left I said, “I hope the All Blacks get beaten in the World Cup – she was not amused.

We took a taxi to the Hotel Plam and then walked into Olbia. The main street is nicely kept for the tourists but the rest of the place is not particularly pleasant. The standard gauge TrenItalia station is somewhat run down and we saw an ancient diesel railcar move out into the sidings. There are very few trains but a number of people were hanging around.

We looked for Seadas in a bakers but what we were given was raw pastry with a cheese filling. Later on Mary found some Pardulas or Casadinas which are pastry filled with fresh cheese flavoured with cinnamon, raisins, saffron and lemon.  There is a market on Saturdays but it is nothing special. I bought a cheese with wax on the outside and strung up with a piece of string.
In the Saturday market
The cheese lasted us a couple of days.
Date carved in a stone lintel

We don't need to see any more of Olvia!

The bus picked us up at the hotel and took us to the airport to pick up the rest of the group. There was a delay as one woman had lost her bag.

The drive to Palau was interesting. The countryside was very rocky in places yet where there was reasonable soil we saw cattle grazing and the hillsides were covered in vineyards. There were many outcrops of rock that had been weathered into fantastic shapes.

The hotel isn't bad although it escapes me how they can claim four stars.

After settling in we went to the local supermarket and bought a bottle of Cannonau red wine – from Sardinia. The initial taste is good – full and fruity but there is a somewhat bitter edge. Dinner was nothing special but it did allow us to get to know some of the group.

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