We left Vernazza after two nights thinking we had seen all we wanted to see and would find some where to stay between Vernazza and Modena. We decided to not take the autostrada and drive by old roads which is a lot slower but we were not in a hurry.
We thought that about 1/2 way to Modena would be good and we could find somewhere to stay the night. We drove for about two hours working our way up the mountains until the top of a mountain pass at 1100 meters. The weather was closing in and as we got to the top there was thick mist covering the mountain.
There was a shop and a bar with accommodation so we got out and had a coffee and asked about the room. The room was 35 EURO per night and we asked to see it.
We took the room, it was cold and were told the heating would take 20 minutes to heat the room up. Pam then decided that she hated the room and had a little sulk. So I has to go back to the lady who spoke almost no English and told here we no longer wanted the room and we left the mountain. I quite liked the idea of waking up at the top of a mountain, but it was not to be.
We drove down the mountain and there was nothing that looked like accommodation at all close by. We kept driving and at about 80 km to Modena we decided we needed to find something soon, so we entered HOTELS in the TOMTOM and followed its route.
We found the village but there was no parking signs everywhere and it was raining quite hard by then. We flagged that one after trying to find how to drive there with the TOMTOM wanting us to drive down footpaths. I guess they are called “via something” which translates to “something road” hence why it was wanting us to drive down there. We left that town and kept on driving. We drove past a B&B sign on the main road 400 meters so we looked for that and could not find an entrance, so we did a u-turn and drove back and found a bridge about 400 meters before the sign. The sign said 400 meters both ways – da! We drove over the bridge and followed the track for ages, up very windy hills. We never found the B&B and turned around after about 3 KM.
We then selected another name in the TOMTOM and drove there. Up a small windy road, and then up a very steep drive way but it was closed. We pulled another from the TOMTOM and drove to it, but it did not exist. This went on for ages, we found one in a village that Pam said looked nice, but it was closed on Mondays.
We then gave up and phoned the place where we were going to be staying (Ca Penelope) for the next 6 nights and asked if we could come 1 day earlier – they said yes so we at least had somewhere to go.
The rain was very very hard, and the roads entering Modena were very very busy with people probably going home, the visibility was bad.
The roads into Modena also gave me a bad feeling about this place in that it is just a large city, something I can’t be bothered with. We drove off towards Maranello which also looked like a major city and found the farm where we are staying – right on the edge of town. The rain kept coming down, and we drove in and got out of the car.
I did something like 6 hours driving when I was only planning on 2 hours, I was very buggered after the drive.
We checked in and were shown the apartment, really a room with a small kitchenette. It was clean and inviting. Pam cooked some pasta with the small amount of ingredients we had and we opened a wine out of a milk carton – 1 EURO 39 cents – it was crap but we had to see what it was like.
A pretty quiet night and out like a light.