Last weekend a group of our students and teachers went to Pisa and Elba Island as an optional trip.
On Friday morning, after a warm cappuccino and a fragrant croissant, we were on the road excited for the adventure we were going to have.
The drive was very long – more then 6 hours – but when we arrived in Pisa we realized that it was worth it!
Piazza dei Miracoli (Fields of Miracles) was opening in front of our eyes with its white Leaning Tower, the massive Cathedral, and the beautifully decorated Baptistery.
The students climbed to the top of the tower and reached the seven bells that are tuned to the seven notes of the major scale. We all felt the inclination of the floor while going up. Scary!
After the Tower we entered the Cathedral. The decorations inside were stunning. We found in the central nave the big chandelier that was observed by the scientist Galileo Galilee to study the oscillation of the pendulum.
We then admired the pulpit realized by the sculptor Nicolò Pisano, who was the vanguard of Renaissance style. The marble was so well carved that it appeared soft as chalk and shiny as silk. Simply stunning.
After filling ourselves up with art and beauty, we jumped again on the bus and reached Piombino Port to board the Ferry.
Finally we arrived on Elba Island, tired but happy.
The morning after we opened the window of our rooms and we saw in front of us the most beautiful of landscapes. Our hotel was located in a little pine tree forest overlooking a large bay with sunny beaches. The smell of pinecones, clear blue water, chirping of the crickets, and green of the hills gave us the impression we were in a Mediterranean paradise.
We enjoyed a morning of relaxation, swimming, paddleboat rides, volleyball games, sunbathing, chats, and lots of fun.
In the afternoon we visited Capanne Mountain, and with a funicular we reached the highest point on the island. The ride was exciting, and the view from the top surprising. We were overlooking the entire island. We also recognized the mainland, Montecristo Island and, further in the blue sea, the sinuous profile of Corsica. We were walking in the air.
We then drove to the town of Marina di Campo, while “DJ Colosimo” entertained us with classics from the early 2000s. The seafood we tried was delicious.
The day after we drove to the biggest town on Elba: Portoferraio. There we visited the Residence that Napoleon Bonaparte chose for his exile. He lived on the island from 1814 to 1815 and his house still preserves some original furniture: his bed camp, his sister Paolina's bedroom and ball gown, the studio with his desk and books, and a beautiful terrace overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea. Not bad for house arrest...
After a bit of Napoleonic history by Mr Knapp, we were ready to board the ferry and drive back to Lanciano. To kill the time during the long drive some students tried to solve Mr Knapp's math problems... successful operation! Well done!
We arrived in Lanciano on Sunday night, tired but enriched. The students seemed very grateful to their families for this great opportunity, so were the teachers for having travelled with such an amazing group of kids. Mr Knapp, Mr Colosimo and Miss Tozzi thank everyone for the great time together!
I would like to sincerely thank Mr. Knapp and Ms. Tozzi for organizing this incredible and memorable trip, and Mr. Colosimo for joining them in leading the tour. I must thank Ms. Tozzi again for writing this wonderful blog, and all the students who provided the beautiful pictures.