Monday 20th March
Today was another one of those wash/clean up days, but everything is ready for touring around and enjoying the next couple of days. Did a spot of shopping and fed the barby. Another first of 2011.
|Karen invigilating on my cooking|
We took the coastal road and went for a sightseeing tour to Sorrento. The traffic was horrendous, but eventually we got there.
|Sorrento looking back from the harbour|
Sorrento was very pretty, but we headed straight for the harbour and booked a trip to the Isle of Capri. (I’m sure there was an old film made there).
It was a half hour trip by a jet boat and on docking we bought a map and sat for a coffee to decide what we fancied seeing.
|On the jet boat to Capri|
We were only there for 3 hours, so it had to be quick. In the end, we have seen enough churches and religious bits so we took a local bus up into Capri Town on the top of the rock and that was an experience in its self. These buses are dinky Mercedes buses with room for 8 people to sit and 33 to stand. The roads are all really narrow and winding and the bus drivers do not spare the horses, we got off in the centre of Capri having done a full work out holding on and balancing around the corners. It was quite cheap though.
|Capri harbour fro the town of capri|
We wandered about and discovered a mass of little alley ways and tunnels, which you could easily get lost in.
|Quaint and tiny streets|
The locals run around these little streets in tiny little 3 wheelers which carry loads far bigger than the vehicles themselves, but they all have really loud horns. The shops were gorgeous, but no prices were shown. Never a good sign unless you don’t have to worry about money.
|No price tags on these goods|
|St Michele La Croce church|
I liked Capri though and on surviving the journey back down to the harbour, we sat and had a beer watching the boats and the people. Ray says it was the most expensive beer ever, yeah yeah, that’s this week anyway.
Well it was, £4.40 for piddly little glass like this. It was only 3/4 full when delivered.
|£4.40 for this piddly drink, thats about £16 a pint|
Today we went off in search of a little place called Positano, it is on the Amalfi Coast, but to get there, we did a Ray diversion. Monte Faito, it is a twisting, hairpin road that goes right up into the mountains (1015 m high) and the views were spectacular, looking down onto the harbours and over the towns.
|Looking down on Pompei and surrounding area|
|There were around 40 hairpin bends on this tiny road - it was mad|
Unfortunately, our pictures do not do it justice. It was a bit of a tough ride for Ray, but before long we were on the way back down and picked up the coastal road to take us to Positano.
|Positano - no roads in this lot|
|The bay at Conca dei Marini|
This in comparison was a lovely road for a motor cycle. All it needed was less nutty Italien scooter riders and car drivers who overtake when the rest of us would not even consider it. I don’t know who wrote, or if there even is an Italien Highway code, but I think he must have been on drugs. Anything seems to go and even if the street is oneway, we have watched them just turning into it. Horns are a must, but there is this constant barrage of them, that everyone just ignores them. I’ve touched on this before, but anything is okay on a scooter, dogs, barrels, 4 people, kids, building supplies, all riders must be smoking, on the phone, steering with knees, the last 3 points refer to motor cars aswell, (no comments from my Mum are required at this present time, or my brother who seem to think I used to steer with my knees!!!!!!).
Anyway, as usual, I digress.. We followed the coast all the way to Salerno and had a spot of lunch at 5pm and then headed for home. It was thoroughly enjoyable and we really did like the roads. The views are wonderful and the engineering of the houses and the use of the slopes, by the locals is quite remarkable.
There are lemon and orange trees growing on steep slopes and every bit of land is used, I understand that in this kind of terrain, space is a premium, but they really have made the most use of it. In many ways I love the simplicity of Italy, if there is a problem, they don’t set up a quango to sort it out and 33 meetings later another meeting is set up to finalise the outcome, they just get on with it, and it is us, who are used to the above quango and meetings, who struggle with it.