Trip Report By Mel & Karen Ray
Nice Italian breakfast at the Hotel ... plan for the day => catch a hop-on-off bus and see/learn more about Verona.
Stepped out on the plaza and behold there are police, and politicians everywhere ... a large part of the plaza was cordoned off to make way for two groups of police (say ~50 in one group and ~25 in another) ... all dressed in their 'blues' ... politicians being escorted via red carpet to the huge viewing stand (set up over night) ... elementary school children (~25) waving flags (probably flag of Verona ... not Italy) ... a single bugle sergeant ... police cars & motorcycles neatly aligned on the plaza grounds (~20) ... a master-of-ceremonies with a ton of medals ... and a moderate crowd of civilians.
Soon the activities began and we think it is the annual awards ceremony to recognize valor, service & promotions (we're pretty sure). Anyhow, we watched the event until it's conclusion ... in all, about an hour.
Found our way to the hop-on-hop-off bus stop ... two routes, 1 hour each. As you leave the plaza the wall around the city still standing and quite impressive ... the story of this 2,000 year old city was told and places of interest identified.
Of course the most interesting to us is Giulietta home ... buy a ticket to enter ... inspect her home and visit the famous balcony where she called out for Romeo ... so Karen went out on the balcony whilst Mel stood below with camera ... NO singing !!! ... however, in the garden where Mel stood, also stands a bronze statue of Giulietta ... and it is said if one rubs her breasts then they shall be blessed with good luck ... so, Mel gave it a try !!!
As we returned to the Plaza we heard the sounds of 'tear-down' the facilities for the opera series ... coming from The Arena ... so, we returned to see the huge scaffolding (curtains removed) and sound technology used last evening ... what a huge job to remove all this and ready for the winter season ... large crew removing & labeling every single piece to prepare for the 2014 opera series.
Yes, this day had a lot of nice 'surprise' built in ... we, being all caught up in the Romeo & Giulietta opera, really enjoyed Verona!