Sunday, October 23, 2011

Wednesday 19 October Aritzo to Cagliari

Pictures added October 28

We woke up far too early for comfort and went down to breakfast. The highlight was a tray of several local pastries which were excellent, some of them had walnuts on top.

The coach took us to Sorgono where we picked up our charter railcar for Mandas. On the way we encountered a flock of goats and then a flock of sheep with a shepherd and a dog. Many of the sheep had bells. The area is heavily forested with many cork oaks and there are also vineyards, many of the vine leaves were turning red and orange.
There was a rusty steam engine at Sorgono
Ready for departure from Sorgono
This was a much better train. The railcar was nicely painted and worked well. The railway people along the line enjoyed having us and there was much joking and friendly banter. Once again the weather was very good with a clear blue sky.

There were the following photographic stops:
Desula Tonara,
Belvi Aritzo (where there were two small dogs, one friendly and one not so friendly.
A bridge
Maena Sardo where there were some beehives made from tree trunks
Laconi where a bar had been set up selling beer, soft drinks, ice creams and photos. I had a tasting of red mirto (myrtle liqueur). The man didn't want me to pay but I gave him something anyway. There were figs on a tree and the shade was very pleasant.
Stop by a river (not successful – and we disturbed an ants' nest)
Bridge by a tunnel
Bee hives

Some of the original rail (1888 in this case) was still in place.

The light at the end of the tunnel is Angelina who controlled the run pasts.

The whole trip went very well and we were in Mandas in plenty of time to sit over a glass of white wine at the station bar. On the platform the lady station mistress/shunter/signalman/general factotum was getting a trailer out of the way and assembling our two car train to Cagliari. The railcar driver didn't want to do it the way she did and there was a great deal of shouting and gesticulating. He got his way because he was moving the railcar around. We were banished to the second car, which was the car we had used from Sogorno.
We finally left at 1507 (7 minutes late) and made a good run into Cagliari. The country turns into dry (at this time of year) farming then into the suburbs of the city. The train terminates at Montserrato but our ticket was valid on the tramway into the city center where our bus took us to the hotel. We have a room with a view over the Mediterranean and the port area.
Tram terminus at Montserrato

When the driver leaves his door open there is a good view
An opportunity for some down time.
Click below to see all the Sorgono images in slide show format:

Click below to see Cagliari tram pictures in slide show format

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