Before I set out of a five week long trip, I gave myself a task of providing updates of the holiday through Twitter. Not being a compulsive user, I had reservations whether I could accomplish it so I added another element to the challenge. I told family and friends that the only way to stay informed was through the Gourmantic twitter page.
Although internet access was limited at times and other activities took precedence, I kept my end of the challenge. Looking back at the tweets now, makes me ponder.
Can a maximum of 140 characters tell snippets of a travel story? Has Twitter become the equivalent of the modern-day postcard? Have we finally given up on the romance of handwritten notes on the back of glossy cards for the speed and convenience of a few keystrokes?
Below is the series of tweets in the order they were posted. They form an outline of snippets in time. Soon, they will tell the full story.
Last Gourmantic Post from Sydney for a while -> http://bit.ly/4yzIMK Let the foodie and travel adventures begin!
Greeted by #Dubai desert heat at 8.30 am. A380 flight was so quiet. Had 3 breakfasts in diff time zones. Blown away by everything so far!
Had a swim in the Gulf, with Atlantis the Palm on one side and Burj el Arab on the other. Like bathwater only very salty. #Dubai
#Dubai 1st impressions: Cranes. Construction. Soaring architecture. Friendly people. Enjoying the Emirati hospitality.
Mesmerised by the magic hour as I watched in silence the sun sinking into the water. #Dubai
Dinner: Assorted mezze. Arak. Grilled meats. Double apple shisha into the night. Live music, great company. Can’t get better than that!
Visited Al Jumeirah Mosque on Sunday. A memorable cultural experience. So pleased photography was allowed. #Dubai
Tagines, couscous, local fish, arak and shisha, while Burj Al Arab put on a spectacular lightshow #Dubai
Dune bashing in the desert was more fun than anticipated. Didn’t ride a camel. He got too frisky every time I approached #Dubai
I saw the sun set in the desert over undulating sand dunes. Later, I saw the full moon rise from the horizon over desert dunes. #Dubai
Cocktails on the terrace. Atlantis the Palm rising from the sea in the distance. Like a mirage but so real you could touch it. #Dubai
In #Dubai’s giant malls, you can shop till your drop. Enough said.
Exquisite afternoon tea at Burj al Arab. Stunning location. A 7 star hotel dripping with opulence #Dubai
From the desert heat to the cool rain. Minding the gap in #London under grey skies.
1.5 bottles of Barbera D’Asti between 2 people cures jetlag from a 7hr flight across different timezones. #London
Thank you #London for putting on blue skies this morning. I needed that as much as my morning coffee.
Waistlines and suitcases are complaining of excess baggage. And it’s only Day 6 of the trip.
Great meal/ambience @jamie_oliver Jamie’s Italian. Winner: Chestnut mushrooms w smoked scamorza. Worth going back to try more. #London
Found something in #London I want to bring home. Bocca di Lupo Restaurant. Sitting at the Chef’s Table was an experience to remember!
Buongiorno Italia. Here in #Sicily, it feels as if I am amidst an Italian movie!
There’s no such thing as too many dolci siciliani: raviolo, canolo, rhum baba, cassata, bomba… Mamma mia che buono!
Living on Italian/Sicilian time (and loving it). With limited internet connections, updates will be scarce for a while.
From the rooftops of the Kasbah, pistachios and cold Moretti beer under the late afternoon sun #Sicily
Drove through the vineyards of Marsala. Suddenly felt very thirsty. #Sicily
Watched the sun sink into the Mediterranean while Sicilians continued on their evening passegiata #Sicily
Lunch by the seaside. Variety of freshly-caught fish brought to the table. Cooked to our taste and liking. We ate the sea. #Sicily
Touched the ruins at Valle dei Templi, the ancient temples of Agrigento. Cold stone from 581 BC never felt so alive #Sicily
Windmills and salt marshes of Trapani on one side and vineyards on the other. Loving #Sicily!
Allora… my favourite Italian word. Holds so much promise.
Took steps back in time through the paved streets of Erice on top of Monte San Giuliano #Sicily
Erice: The stunning views of islands rising from the Mediterranean waters have been etched in memory #Sicily
Gelato siciliano: Tartuffo, Pistachio. Lingua di suocera. Cuscinetti. Sospiri. Bellibrutti. Mandorle. Frutta martorana. Why say no? #Sicily
One gentle wave sent back home from the blues of the Mediterranean sea. One quiet whisper that echoed… until next time #Sicily
Bid arrivederci to Palermo under heavy downpour. #Sicily
From the south to the north, enjoying La Bella Italia. #Italy
Never argue with an Italian that a pasta a day makes you fat. It’s the equivalent of the French paradox #Italy
Roasted chestnuts bought in Piazza dei Signori in Padova. Che buoni! #Italy
Experienced Venice under aqua alta. Needed gumboots! #Italy
Got acquainted with Spritz in Treviso. Prosecco, Aperol or Campari and soda. Ancora uno! #Italy
After a magical day on the islands of Murano, Burano and Torcello, I was entranced by the sun setting over the Venetian lagoon. #Venice
Burano is even more beautiful than anticipated. Brightly-painted houses reflecting in tranquil waters. So many photo opportunities!
Call me ‘La Gourmantica’. A few more weeks here in #Italy and I may just become fluent in Italian.
Vicenza is whisper-quiet. Its centre is area pedonale. At noon it looked almost deserted. Lunched on melt-in-mouth gnocchi tartufati.
20 days. 7907 photos. 3 countries Many towns/cities. It’ll take a year just to sort and catalogue them!
Ate masanette, seasonal miniature crabs from the #Veneto region. Only available for a few weeks in the year. Buonissimi!
Had a forgettable lunch at Piazza Bra’. Got damp pants from wet seats. Make of that what you will. #Verona
Would have loved to see a live performance at Arena di Verona. “Twas awesome just standing in it.
Like many others, left a memento on the walls at Casa di Giuelietta in #Verona. With Romeo…
No of times heard @Muse Uprising on Italian radio so far: 3. Bought the new CD in London. Haven’t had a chance to listen yet.
Through sleepy eyes, saw the sun setting over #Padova from the train.
Vaporetto strike AND aqua alta spilling onto Piazza S. Marco turned #Venice into a tourist shuffle. Saw Lido Beach in the wet. Uninspiring.
Loved the fish markets at the Rialto. Would have loved to bring some home and cook it. Took many photos instead. #Venice
Ate typical dishes from the Veneto region that made me swoon. They’ll get their own posts complete with photos.
Got mistaken for a local while ordering dinner at a restaurant. Was told my accent sounded very Italian! Sono molto contenta.
Pleasantly surprised that the hotel room had a view. Of the Lake. #Como
Visited Villa del Balbianello in Lenno #Como where they shot a scene from 007 Casino Royale. Stunning grounds and views of the lake.
Dined on the most amazing fish. Missoltino from lake #Como and wild seabass cooked in salt crust.
Bliss. Daylight savings ended last night. Got a much needed extra hour sleep, I need a holiday from this one!
I could easily park my laptop in Bellagio and finish writing that novel. The views and tranquillity are more than inspirational. #Como
A bottle of Chianti went down very easily over dinner. That’s one large bottle, not a miniature for those playing at home!
Chianti with fish? Yes, the red kind (ref 007 From Russia with Love). Best not to argue with an Italian…
Travel Myth 1: With all the walking you won’t put on any weight. Travel Fact 1: I’m being fattened like a goose destined for foie gras.
Superb lunch @ Locanda dell’Isola Comacina, small island in Lake Como w/t spectacular views & charming host. An experience to be remembered.
http://twitpic.com/n62aj – Postcard from Milano: Enjoying an espresso near the Duomo.
No luck in seeing Il Cenacolo, da Vinci’s The Last Supper. It is booked out till November #Milano
Teatro alla Scala is simply stunning. Well worth the visit to see the theatre and the adjoining museum. #Milano
Arrivederci Italia! Grazie per tutti. Alla prossima volta…
Bonjour Paris! With just five minutes in boulevard saint-germain and I feel right at home.
In #Milano, had a memorable menu degustazione at Pane e Aqua. A fresh approach to degustation menus from an impressive chef.
Views of snow-capped Alps on the flight from #Milano to #Paris made me think of eating meringues…
I have one rule when it comes to #Paris: If foie gras is on the menu, I eat it.
Escargots, foie gras, confit de canard, magret de canard, crème brulee then a good dose of Armagnac. And that was the first night in #Paris.
Asterix and Obelisk are 50 years old. Visited Musee de Cluny for the exhibition. The museum itself was worth the visit.
Strolled along the Seine after visiting Notre-Dame. #Paris has turned cold today. Took refuge in a café by the Seine with a chocolat chaud.
Enjoying a Sainte Maure de Touraine chevre (goat’s cheese) and a good drop of 2003 Pomerol.
Macarons et cafe creme… for breakfast!
Celebrating 90 years, saw the Vogue covers exhibition along the Champs-Elysees. #Paris
Soupe gratinee aux onions, magret de canard a la crème de cassis, ile flottante au chocolat preceded by 2 kir royal. #Paris
Walked along quai d’Orsay, huddled under an umbrella as the autumn leaves swayed onto the wet ground. #Paris is romantic in any weather.
Free entry to musee du quai branly on 1st Sunday of the month. Travelled ½ way round the world to see indigenous Australian artefacts #Paris
It’s not always about food. It’s a love affair with buildings, bridges and metro stations. Can’t stop taking photos! #Paris
After 5 trips to #Paris, I finally made it to Angelina. The chocolat chaud africain and the Mont Blanc dessert were sublime.
Last night, fruits de mer, giant seafood platter and a fine bottle of Sancerre. Followed by dessert, lemon sorbet swimming in… Vodka!
Spent the day walking around Montmartre. Stopped for a croque monsieur at Cafe des Deux Moulins, of the Amelie fame.
Travel Myth 2: Pack what you need then 1/2 it. Travel Fact 2: Even when you pack the kitchen sink, there’ll be at least 1 item you need!
“It’s comforting to know that wherever you are in the world, there will always be the Simpsons on TV.” – Mr G.
Dinner at Le Procope, oldest cafe in #Paris. Escargots, foie gras (bien sur!) and coq au vin. Purrrfect in the cold wet weather.
And on this ♥ special ♥ November day, a tribute Gourmantic post: A Tahitian Wedding Tale http://bit.ly/OQDyy
Looked down on #Paris last night as she sparkled beneath resto Jules Verne/La Tour Eiffel. Window table Top menu degustation Best views!
I may run out of superlatives when I get to describe dinner at Le Grand Vefour #Paris
Watched the light show of the Tour Eiffel from the Trocadero. La grande dame de fer put on her colourful best which ended in crowd applause.
The last meal in #Paris was a leisurely lunch in a literary café in the 6eme. Naturally, it included foie gras.
Macarons from Laduree were simply divine. Wish I could have brought the entire Laduree patisserie with me.
When I farewelled Paris from the plane, the Tour Eiffel responded with shimmering lights. Au revoir Paris. A la prochaine…
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