This is a city that has a long history. I have already told you how Napoleon crossed St Bernards Pass (but I didn't tell you he had 40,000 soldiers and 5,000 horses in tow), but before him Hannibal crossed - with his elephants! The Romans were here long before them, and probably the celts before that. There are many Roman monuments here, and there is an active archeological dig going on every day, right in the centre of town, which passers by stop and watch.
The Cathedral in Aosta
One of the Roman monuments
A frescoe in the Cathedral
The people are wonderful. I have had a lot of help - from the man who sold me a new pair of walking shoes today, to the Lory at the laundromat who rode her bike home to pick up her car to drive me back to the hotel, because my feet were so sore!
Here in Aosta I have companionship too. As I was walking to my hotel on the first day the first person I saw was fellow pilgrim Steve, and we passed each other a number of times in the few hours he was in town. Then, last night, I had the pleasure of the company of a former Via Francigena pilgrim and his wife. They come from Perth, and Jim was showing Angela some of the territory that he walked through last year. Jim has filled me in on a few things - such as the limit for the ATM machines, how to catch the ferry on the River Po, and what adapter works for the battery charger! Very useful stuff!
The Italian people like to go out at night sitting and chatting, dressed in ther best. In Spain this is called dar un paseo, and I think that it is called passegiata in Italian. I have just passed a group of people sitting outside and one of the blokes had a button accordian entertaining his friends.
A street in Aosta, with the people starting to congregate.
I must fly as I am meeting Jim and Angela for dinner. Tomorrow I am going to take the bus on the same journey that I would have wlaked: I am hoping that my new shoes will settle in and that within a few days I will be able to walk freely again,. Today I am much better than yesterday, so if I keep improving I will be right for walking again very soon!