Etruscan museum show case

15th cruise day, Italy day 1: Tarquina day trip [YQrtw Day 27 May 4]

Location: Legend of the Seas
Location: Civitavecchia, Italy [Day trip to Tarquinia]

Initially I thought I had to leave the ship at 6:00am. Thank goodness the timing was more generous and I left at 8:30am. There was a shuttle bus from the ship to the entrance of the port which saved everyone lots of walking.

I was supposed to reach my B&B at 8:00am. I timed myself carefully but couldn’t find the place and got lost. In the end I did find the correct square and a lady brought me up to my room.

My room was very cute. A red sofa and a super cushy bed. Of course, I did not have time to lie in bed all day so I got ready to head out to Tarquinia for the Etruscan tombs which John and Liz from the cruise recommended.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t figure out the doors of the B&B. The main door was heavy and the electric lock didn’t seem to open. When I tried to go back to the apartment, the house door’s key hole was horizontal and I took forever to figure out how to unlock it. One of the guests at the B7B showed me that I need to push really hard to get the door to open.

Damn Italian locks

So finally, I was on my way to Tarquinia. The next train to the town was coming in more than an hour. I met a few cruisers I know while waiting for the train. One group was heading to Florence while the other group to Sienna.

Our train came, 10 minutes late, and everyone pushed their heavy luggage up the rungs. I was luggage-less and managed to find a seat by the window.

The train sped through the Tuscan countryside. The view was amazing. I saw a lot of fields, some vineyards, puffs of brown sheep, oceans of wild flowers in purple, orange and yellow.

Since Tarquinia was only 2km away from Civitavecchia, my stop came very soon. After getting off the train, I immediately got on a bus which had a very handsome driver. (Squee.)

My first stop was the tourist information center where they give you 10 minutes free of Wi-Fi in exchange for a copy of your passport. I updated my mom and my Google Map within the tiny time frame.

The museum was about 10 meters away so it made sense to head there first. I used my *ahem* student card and got a 4 euro ticket that came with a visit to the tombs.

The museum is housed in an old building. Even though it seemed small, it was packed with Etruscan goodies. The Etruscans lived in Tuscan areas but eventually disappeared after being conquered by the Romans.

Etruscan museum

The sarcophagi on display were quite cute. Each sarcophagus has a person carved on the lid of it. Most of the carvings were “banqueting”. Some were leaning towards the visitor in the right way while some looked like someone stuck a head on the shoulders of a carving and violently snapped the neck.

I particularly like the Greecian pots in the museum. They looked exactly like the Greek pots they show on TV and encyclopedia. I even found those with my favorite Greek deities Athena and Hermes.

After the museum, I walked around aimlessly. Suddenly, I heard a lot of cars honking. It turned out to be a post-wedding procession.

Tuscan wedding procession

Unpleasant lunch

Later, I ventured into a local restaurant. On the menu, there was a first and second course page. It turned out that the serving of the first course was tiny. I ordered a second course of pork steak which was yummy.

Small plate of pasta

However, the experience was marred by the restaurant guy. One of the tourist/customer must have said something terribly insulting to him when she paid. The restaurant guy was rude afterwards and complained in Italian really really loudly (shouting kind of loud).

He went on and on and on. It was very uncomfortable. He should have dared told the customer what he was not pleased with instead of acting like a child.

After the unnerving lunch, I walked around some more and decided to head to the bus stop for the tombs. The bus never came so I go on the bus back to the train station to catch the train to Civitavecchia.

Train to Civitavecchia

I walked around some more in the small town and bought a SIM card. The card gave me headaches until the next noon.

I found a Carrefour and bought strawberry and ricotta. Bad move. I didn’t realize that the ricotta was dry-ish and tasted nothing like yogurt. Italian cuisine fail, YQ.

So I “feasted” on strawberries and surfed the internet.

At 9:00pm, I ventured out to see what was lurking in the night. Civitavecchia seems more lively at night with well-dressed Italian youths sitting in the cold, talking over beer.

Tourists from cruise ships in the day are replaced by Italians. Is it because Civitavecchia is far enough from Rome to be considered edgy by its patrons?

It was too cold to walk around any more so back into the warm B&B I went. I found a painting of Mary and baby Jesus on the wall of the building.

Ave Maria

More about Liau Yun Qing

Yun Qing is a writer, improviser and curious person. She loves finding little adventures in life. In 2013, she went on a 130-day round-the-world trip. She wrote a book to help those who also want to go on a career break.

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