The dog-eat-dog cut and thrust of the Combo empire-building programme continues apace and necessitated a trip to Urbino in Le Marche and then The Eternal City. Urbino is a predictably exquisite hilltop town near the Adriatic coast, virtually untouched since Dante sharpened his quill.
How about this for a bar?
And then I snuck in here for a couple.
The local white wine is called Verdicchio and there are two sub-classifications, Castelli dei Jesi and Matelica which are effectively two different regions. Expressing an interest in the difference between the wines, the charming owner gave me an unexpected BOGOF so I got four glasses for the price of two. Plus stuffing my face with all the usual delicious aperitivi that crowded the bar counter. I spent €6. Imagine an Italian going into a pub in, say, Godalming and asking about the difference between London Pride. and Taylor's Landlord. Two free pints? Your 'avin a larf, intcher? (I'm sure they don't speak like that in Godalming by the way.)
Then it was on to Rome the next day. Business finished I spent ten minutes rubbernecking outside the Italian parliament waiting for that week's government to collapse. There was this police car outside. Neat or what? Note the completely superfluous two blue lights on the roof.