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Montagnana is in the Veneto region; it is surrounded by two kilometers of medieval walls. A nice museum, tours only, opens at 11am only a few days a week. Montagnana's name is a bit misleading, it is pleasantly flat. At the train station, there is a nice cafe with a dining deck. If you are staying at Hotel Aldo Moro, someone will pick you up if you let them know when you arrive. The family-run hotel itself dates from 1940, and has a classic ambience - marble columns in the large lobby, a breakfast area and a restaurant on premises. There is free parking on-site as well. Lots of restaurants, hosterie, and cafes with good menus. And a bakery with gluten-free options. I could not wait to try the local specialties, which include cornmeal cookies with raisins, a dark fruitcake type of bread, the prosciutto of Montagnana, famous in the region. At one small restaurant, I had cornmeal gnocchi in a butter sauce with the prosciutto and cheese. Some of the hosterie specialize in platters of prosciutto and othe locally produced meats, cheeses, and vegetables. There is a special filled flatbread that makes a light lunch.

I must note that even with my gluten intolerance, I had no ill effects from the things I ate that included semolina flour.

Every day I walked around the walls, stopped at cafes (best way to keep from rushing through my cafe breaks is to order a hot tea, which takes me forever to finish). My second day in town I got my hair cut (€28 in Montagnana, would have been €50 in Roma). And I bought a silk scarf, since the two scarves that I brought don't go with blue. Now I feel like I am living like a local - at least at the cash register.

Today I take the train to Monselice where I will wait for my friends from Switzerland to pick me up for our annual two weeks in Italy, just enough company to break up my summer-long trip.