Holiday Images
Puglia: May/June 2014 
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Room 306 is on the top floor, accessed from the most magnificent circular landing that is decorated with murals and fancy lamps. The room is spacious but on the dark side and quite cold. We warm ourselves by making tea that we drink on the landing after moving chairs from our room. Although dinner is scheduled for 8pm, there is no sign of activity in the opulent restaurant and we have to summon a waiter from the kitchen. With the aid of our dictionary we place our order, but are not sure whether we have requested pasta or pork. Eventually, we are served very large portions of both, and have to decline desserts. For much of the meal, we are the only diners.
After much use of sign language, a member of staff makes an adjustment to a thermostat on the landing outside our room - and we have heat. After we point out that a ceiling light fitting has only two out of six bulbs providing illumination, a ladder is produced and more bulbs installed; a bedside lamp without a plug is replaced. Thus, a most eventful evening finishes - it appears that the hotel has not yet 'opened for the season', a situation that is repeated as we continue our travels
May 18th: from Campobasso we drive to Saepinum where we spend
a couple of hours exploring the substantial remains of a Roman town
Located about 15-kilometres south of Campobasso, Saepinum was occupied by the Samnites and Romans (293 BC to 882 AD) before being taken by the Saracens
Our next two nights are spent at the Hotel Sorriso in Lucera - a town that we are able to explore on the afternoon of May 18th and the whole of the next day, despite many of the tourists sites being closed
Lucera Castle (closed)
Entrance to the closed  Roman Amphitheatre in Lucera
The Museo Civico is well worth visiting - a former palace with Arabic and Roman remains and a splendid mosaic floor. As our hotel's restaurant is not open this evening, we have pizzas at a creamery near the Cathedral as we watch speakers addressing a large crowd that has gathered. The following evening, after again exploring the interesting streets of Lucera, we return to our hotel to find that the room has not been serviced. This results in many apologies and the gift of a bottle of wine when we depart. May 19th ends with another very filling meal
After a day without driving, today (May 20th) we will drive 170-kilometres to Vieste with stops at Troia and Monte Sant'Angelo on the way. In the hilltop village of Troia we find the magnificent Cathedral with its extraordinary rose window (right) famous as one of the most beautiful in Puglia - it consists of eleven slender columns assembled in a wheel, the spaces between them filled with decorative carved stone grilles
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