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Hey Dorothy, we aren’t in Kansas anymore…or Italy!

 

Boat to Positano from Salerno

 

What a beautiful ride along the Amalfi Coast!.  I didn’t even think about taking the bus.  I can’t do those high cliffs with no space unless Ron is driving…and then I am a basket case.  Why do it anyway when you can see the entire vista from the sea.  I loved the wind blowing my hat and the clouds misting the steep mountains dotted by fortresses and old villas.  When you realize that most of these have been here for centuries, it’s staggering.

When I arrived early at the meeting place I found a great vantage point at a bar  along the marina.

 

Amalfi, on the way to Positano

 

Calabria is so deep in the heart of Italy that it was a surprise to see Americans, so to hear English spoken by all of the passersby and to have my wine served in a proper (in the U.S.) red wine glass, partially filled, and Positanoserved with a little cup of pretzels and crackers as opposed to a basket of bread made me feel as if I were home again.  There is something fairly distinctive about Italian style.  I could easily tell that most of the people were not local or even regional.

It didn’t detract, though.  I loved eating gelato cioccolatto and watching the life go on around me.

 

To the left with arches is the villa.

 

The villa where Ron and Becky are staying in Positano is in a hillside location that offers a breathtaking view.  We had dinner on the terrace with vine-covered trellises,

 

Sunrise from the terrace

 

twinkling lights from the boats anchored in the sea and more brilliant lights scattered along the hillsides the rise steeply from the water.  Each time I woke in the night I stepped onto the terrace from my bedroom to look at the same stars that you are seeing in Oregon.

I went to Sorrento this afternoon, so I didn’t entirely escape the winding road, which clings to the mountains, too narrow in places for the bus and larger

 

Look at the road around the highlighted rock...scary, huh?

 

cars to pass each other.  Without thinking I had bought a roundtrip ticket (could have taken a boat again) so I decided to just bite the bullet, shut my eyes and ride home.  It worked (except when the driver would honk, brake and slow down).  I made it back alive.

I’m glad to have gone.  I went in honor of Jean’s Aunt Helen and I could not have been so close and have missed seeing the celebrated town.

Unfortunately, it seemed to me that greater parts of England, Japan, Korea, Australia and the US felt the same way.  The sidewalks were barely passable in the middle of the day on a Thursday.  I wound back through a couple of alleys and found a lovely restaurant on a piazza.  It was a shady place to watch all of the tourists and the few Italians, so I enjoyed it.  Great gnocchi, too!

I was thinking that maybe the time to visit Sorrento would be April or November.  A person might get lucky with the weather and surely the tourist population would be a little less in those months. If you multiple me by all of the people in the world: those sentimental souls who envision evenings with glowing lights, lapping water and warm air caressing their skin, you know why the place is crowded.  Oh well, we must accept that our access to places in the world changes those places.  It’s the same as the people we meet along the way; in some way we are changed, for good or ill, by each person we connect with in our lives.  We may not remember them, nor they us, but we have affected each other.

Well, now, that’s getting philosophical.  Must be fodder for a different blogJ

TRAVEL NOTES:

5 minute walk from the train station in Salerno is the boat marina where boats run to Amalfi (35 minutes) and Positano (70 minutes).  It’s a great way to see the coastline.