Sunday, 27 July 2014

The grass isn't always greener....

With the unusually warm weather in the uk, I have been rather lax on the blogging front.  I thought it apt I write a weather-related post.

If I had a pound for every time somebody said, 'oh, I bet it's hot and sunny in Italy every time you go', I'd be a wealthy woman.  Yes, for the most part we do have some glorious weather when we holiday, but we have also experienced the not so nice weather.

Take our Christmas trip, when we drove to Italy with our boys, all fine on the way down and for the stay at our house, but we encountered this on our way home after we had spent a couple of days in Turin....


Queue for the Frejus Tunnel

View from passenger window.  Near the Frejus Tunnel.
Scary.  A lorry was abandoned as it had got stuck.  The queue for the Frejus Tunnel was getting longer.  We were trying not to panic with the boys sitting in the back, but the snow was falling faster and we didn't have our winter tyres on.  Big mistake.  Huge.  In most European countries, having winter tyres on your car from October to March (I think) is a legal requirement, but not so in the United Kingdom.  


Almost there. (Frejus Tunnel)

I had mentioned to Mr Abruzzo that we may need winter tyres and he laughed and said we'd be fine.  He admitted in the car that day that I had been right.  Happily enough, we made it to the Frejus Tunnel and we met clear roads and zero snow on the French side.  Phew!  Lesson learned: Winter tyres when driving abroad in the winter

On my trip to Abruzzo with my best friend in April, we wanted to drive to the top of the Passo Lanciano.  It was a little bit foggy, but we thought it would clear.  After a cioccolata calda at the ski cafe, we thought it was a great idea.


See, not too bad here. We were wrong. (Passo Lanciano)

It wasn't.  It looks very pretty in this photo below, but we turned the corner and it was literally a whiteout.  I have no photo of that because Laura was gripping the steering wheel with white knuckles and I was clutching my seat with equally whitened hands.


Pretty.  Foggy, but visibility alright. (Passo Lanciano)

I know the road well enough to know where (eventually after a scary ten minutes driving further) there is a wide expanse where the skiing car park is so we could turn around.  We made it back down the mountain.  Worse thing is it happened again the following day when we tried to drive along the Passo Leonardo, except it had only been a bit drizzly so we didn't expect fog to come rolling in.  Lesson learned: fog can get worse and doesn't clear quickly.  

During the same holiday, Laura and I set off from the house and the sky looked a little threatening, but we figured we would be ok if it just rained.  We got to the village and this happened....


Rain storm with hail. (Roccamontepiano)
Roads turned to rivers....

We managed to pull over and off the road, which had turned into a river.  My photo does not do it justice.  As the rain started to slow, we turned round and went home.  This is what the weather had looked like that morning.


See.  Nice weather.  (Roccamontepiano)

Lesson learned: Italian weather can be just as unpredictable as British weather.  Also, when holidaying with best friends, adventures always occur.

So there you go.  I have been told by several of my readers that they appreciate the honesty of my blogging and that I don't write with rose-tinted glasses on.  Italy is beautiful and indeed wonderful, but it doesn't guarantee the weather matches every time!

Check out Sunday Traveler, hosted by my travel blogging buddy SJ at Chasing the Donkey  I have discovered how beautiful Croatia is via SJ's blog. Hope you enjoy reading about it too. xx


20 comments:

SJ Begonja said...

The weather can make us all a little crazy. And yes, I agree love your honesty :) xox

SJ Begonja said...

Ohhh and PS: Thanks for your very kind words.

Lulu Abruzzo said...

Hi SJ. Thank you, and you're very welcome! : D xx

Rochelle and Natasha said...

The weather looks just as bad as in the UK! It wouldn't be too bad any where you go if the weather was predictable ... always carry a coat & brolly just in case :-)

x Roch & Tash x
www.next-route-style.blogspot.co.uk

Lulu Abruzzo said...

It was definitely British-weather! Yes, in future I am taking a brolly and coat everywhere. : / xx

Julie Corbisiero said...

Wow I can't believe all that rain! I always picture Italy sunny. Thanks for this nice post! Have a nice Sunday afternoon.
Julie

Lulu Abruzzo said...

Hi Julie. It was pretty intense! Hoping we get none of that when we go for our summer holiday soon. : / Have a great afternoon too.

Milu Sosa said...

I think weather can be so not predictable in so many places! specially this year. I live in Ohio where people say "if you don't like the weather, wait 20 mins and it will change" haha kind of crazy but so true! so I felt so identified with your post. Even though it looks like Italy's weather is kind of insane, I still want to go visit at least once in my life. Thanks for sharing.

Milu Sosa said...

I didn't finish my comment! lol I invite you to visit my blog and let me know if you would like to follow each other to stay in touch.
XOXO

Milu
www.hellolupi.blogspot.com

Lulu Abruzzo said...

Hi Milu. I think Italy's weather has become more unpredictable over the last two years in particular, but like you say, it's happening everywhere. You should definitely still visit Italy as it is beautiful, rain or shine! I'll visit your blog and follow. xx

Fly DP said...

Nice post ! X

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mail4rosey said...

I hate to drive in inclement weather. We get awful driving conditions in the winter here in Michigan. And we sometimes get that awful white-out fog. I've been driving in that fog on a mountain in Tennessee too, and it is not fun.

In Florida we would get the huge rain storms that would have people pulling off of the road.

I guess there's something everywhere, but that doesn't make it any more fun when it's happening to you.

Now I'm wishing you a great week ahead! :)

Lulu Abruzzo said...

Fog and mountains are not a great combo are they! Hope you have a great week too Rosey. : D

Tiffany Huebner said...

Yikes! It looks like weather we get here in WA sometimes! I remember getting stuck in a monsoon when we were in Sansepolcro, Italy one day. It was insane! Pretty awesome to watch it roll in and out though.
And I agree, I love your honesty in your writing Louisa. :)

Lulu Abruzzo said...

Hi Tiffany. Watching storms in the hills and mountains is pretty awesome. It's always cool when you're not out in it! : )

Darcy said...

those snow pictures totally caught me off guard, haha! I have not seen snow in months!
www.amemoryofus.com

Lulu Abruzzo said...

I love snow until you have to be somewhere and the road/street isn't cleared! : /

Julia Toussaint said...

I haven't seen snow in months! I'm loving summer! lol

Adelina Wong said...

Yikes! It can so easy to forget that it can snow in Italy. I was driving through the northern parts at the end of Jan / beginning of Feb and there was so much snow! Driving all that way from Britain is equally impressive. How long did it take?

Lulu Abruzzo said...

Hi Adelina. Northern Italy is beautiful though isn't it. We usually take two (very long) days, as we stop a lot for coffee etc. I'm going to write a post on travel/driving to Italy from the uk very soon. Thanks for reading!