Bari Again


Bari Again

Sunday, November 30th, 2014

We had to leave Lecce fairly early for the long drive back to Bari. That was where we had rented that car and we had decided that Bari warranted another full day or so to do it justice. Thanks to my iPhone GPS I was able get into the city and to the address of the AirBnB with few problems. Usually, as I may have said, I wind up taking something of a roundabout route through a city because the directions such as “turn right on via santa whatsername are at least half useless since there is almost never a sign indicating the street. So you just kinda have to guess. OK, she must not mean this street because it’s only slightly wider than an ox and I’m not going there. As often as not that WAS the street so you wind around for a bit but eventually get there. Fortunately that was not the case entering Bari but was definitely a characteristic of my trip from Bari to the airport. Perhaps there was a payoff to Google maps to route me through the industrial area so that I could marvel at their industry and remember the names of the companies.

After returning we took a walk to the old town. We of course knew at this point that anything interesting other than food needed to occur before the witching hour of 1:00 PM when all of the stores turn into pumpkins until 4:30 or 5:00. I was looking for the “orecchietti street”. Let me explain. I once tried to make orecchietti at home and failed miserably and looked for guidance on YouTube where I was treated to a number of videos of older Italian women making orecchiette without even thinking about it. This video is actually very interesting so I’ve included it here. I swear I saw at least two of these women inside in their apartments and talked briefly with one and told her that I was pretty sure that I had seen her making orecchiette in a video on the web and she said that she is in one.

In any case, in the video that I mentioned above the street is called Arco Basso (low arch) so I found the street. As I feared, the cold weather had driven people inside although there were still a lot of handmade orecchiette in drying racks outside.

Arco Basso

Arco Basso

Drying orecchiette and "big orecchiette" (orecchiettone?)

Drying orecchiette and “big orecchiette” (orecchiettone?). I’m not sure that the tubular pasta is called

 

After a nice and light lunch at a place in perhaps the main piazza of old Bari (that also had incredible gelato) we returned to the street. There was still nobody outside but there was a woman working with her daughter just inside an open window. She was starting to make another batch of dough. This was clear because there was kind of a “volcano” of semolina flour on a work surface. She came back onto the scene with a pitcher of water and I asked if she would mind if we watched. No problem. So she quickly made and kneaded the dough and started making orecchiette.

Apperitivo lunch

Apperitivo lunch

Gelato

Gelato

More fantastic gelato

More fantastic gelato

As an aside, Bari was an incredible place to shop for clothes. I can’t explain the difference but there seemed to be so many clothes shops for both men and women with different styles and price points. Specifically there were a lot of very attractive clothes in a mid-priced range and I indulged in a couple of shirts and fantasized about returning with a large suitcase and just going clothes crazy.

Here are a few more random shots of things seen in Bari. Definitely worth a visit. Great food, great shopping and high energy feel to the place.

I guess they took the building out that was holding things up on either side.

I guess they took the building out that was holding things up on either side.

Bari Cathedral, building started in 1035, rebuilt after in 1292

Bari Cathedral, building started in 1035, rebuilt  in 1292

Castello Normanno-Svevo originally built in 1132

Castello Normanno-Svevo originally built in 1132

 

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