Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Day 5 of 19 ... Positano, Italy!

Four more days until Ethiopia!

Our goodbye at the Farmhouse Villa Bed and Breakfast was a bit sad as we got to know some of the people who stayed there as well as the owner Francesco and his sister Chiara. Francesco had offered us a tour of this place, but I missed it because David and I just had our plates very full. Francesco will always have a sweet place in my memory there. If anybody wants to stay at a place where they feel like they are really in the middle of Italy, I would highly recommend this type of stay if that is your cup of tea.

Our rental was a pretty nice jaguar. Not bad to travel around italy with.

You may be on your way to pick up your child from Ethiopia and find that your plane also refuels in Rome … why not “hop off the plane” and enjoy Italy for a few days or more before you embark on your very busy life? Why not? Just do it. The cost for the plane ticket wasn’t that much more, you just have to consider where you’ll stay and the cost of that and perhaps a rental. I recommend Tuscany as well as Positano and Rome. We didn’t get to Genova and Venice, but perhaps next time. We had to make choices and we are very happy with the result. If anybody has questions and are thinking about doing this trip, please don’t hesitate to contact me and ask. It will be a blessing … especially if it’s just you and your spouse where the stress and the cost stay low.

Coke-lite ... 3 pieces of ice, no refills. This is where I would blog from, then go to the lobby and post it for free.

Precious coke-lite!

We drove the 5 ½ hours to Positano and found it to be nothing like we’ve experienced before. We’ve seen a lot of beach fronts around Florida, California, Australia, Hawaii … but Positano, with a very small beach front, stands all alone in its distinctive quality. You drive thru Sorrento which is a very active beach and city area, hundreds of scooters, many young and old people alike, a LOT of people. However Positano has a bit less congestion, yet still tons of energy in the people that are there. There are hundreds of homes and storefronts snaking along the hillside. Today we walked down to the beach from our hotel and it took about15 to 20 minutes if you end up going into a few stores along the way, which I did as I purchased some beautiful hand made and painted bowls and plates for some special people as gifts. It was a joy buying them from this man whose family has been living in this hillside in Positano for over 1000 years … that is 50 generations of family. It’s amazing … personally I couldn’t live here, but it is very different and fun to visit. Some of the walk may be a little steep, so you should really wear flats of some sort.

I guess a hotel front owns the property of the orange umbrellas...otherwise there is the other part of the beach for everyone else. There are constant ferries going to and from Capri and the Amalfi Coast.

View from where we had lunch ... spaghetti and it was really good sauce. I'd like to know what they put in it. The Bolognese is finely minced meat with a yummy red sauce. So delicious.

This is where we ate lunch

View from our hotel balcony where we ate dinner

View from our hotel room

The bus stop directly outside our hotel Posa Posa. You can hop on a bus to take you to and from parts of the hilly shops & hotels. We like walking down and do our best to walk up ... these people must have the best looking calves.

Hotel balcony and where they serve meals

I think there was a wedding going on here.

Walking thru Positano

In the summer, bouganvilla blooms over the walkway, creating a very vibrant passageway.


Scooters everywhere

The architecture here is beautiful ... I want this in MY house1

The Duomos here (churches) are absolutely stunning. The priests talk to local shop keepers. I must say, these Priests were so SO handsome! Especially in their black suits!

David admiring the surroundings

You walk on the side of these white lines...cause if you don't, you'll get hit by a cars side mirror or a scooter will knock you down. It's like so much activity in very small alleys.

I must invest more in wrought iron when I return home. It is my favorite piece of accessory to have in the home.

The view to Positano on our way winding thru the hills

When we finally got down to the beach, we had to just take it all in.

As I type this out on the balcony of our hotel which overlooks this charming and colorful hillside, I hear 2 dogs barking back and forth that EVERYONE hears because it’s like the Hollywood Bowl at a concert … it echoes throughout. I hear scooters everywhere going from one place to another. Parking is a rarity, so scooters can fit in so many places … I see why they are used here and throughout Italy.

David and I were very happy with our hotel choice as it is absolutely beautiful. We found it thru the internet and the pictures looked incredible. The reviews from other customers raved about it, so we took a chance on booking it. I love it here. After we arrived, we walked down to the beach and it just reminded me of another time, another place … nothing I’ve personally experienced. A man on the beach was singing an Italian song at the top of his lungs and I felt like he was putting it on for me … just me! There was a blonde boy age 11 begging his Mom to let him stay a little longer and it was just so hilarious how Italian he sounded. I understand Spanish pretty well, so I can understand quite a bit of Italian…very handy here. As Americans, you only hear accents like that in movies or classics, but to stand here right next to it … you are in THEIR world and not yours anymore. Very surreal.

We have the options to take a ferry to either Capri or check out the Amalfi Coast for some Duomos (churches) and to view the coast here. We can rent a scooter (50 Euro for the day … $77 American) which would be a blast, but we’re just not sure what we want to do. We have 3 nights here and leave on Thursday for Rome for one night’s stay and then to Y O U K N O W W H E R E ! I want to be there right now, but I’m trying to be careful about wishing this amazing time away. When will we be back to Italy???? So I’m staying in these moments, but carry her picture everywhere we go.

So … here is what I know about Italy so far …

  • Dogs don’t bark with an accent
  • The cappuccinos here are good, but the ones I make at home taste just as good … yay!
  • They drive like they are all Mario Andretti! No matter what speed, the faster car should have the right of way. This is no joke ... it is very interesting!
  • Drinking a cappuccino in the Piazza Del Campo costs $10 US dollars. $2 for the coffee, $8 for the view.
  • Driving 2 feet behind you on the freeway at 100 mph, is normal … you are supposed to get out of their way. Not okay with me!
  • The soil must be very rich because they use every single bit of it. Mostly you see hay bales (or are they wheat? I don’t’ know.) You see Olive trees and vineyards, but everywhere you look it is absolutely picturesque and stunning … and I don’t use those words often.
  • Italians on the whole do not seem to be “People-Persons” if you know what I mean. We have met so many Italians by now, and I have not as of yet been greeted with a smile or have shown interest in me or David … with the exception of Francesco and our waiter tonight (although we are at a very nice hotel and paid a pretty penny for one piece of meat) but I just find this very interesting. This has just been a fact of our experience and is not just my personal experience … David and I couldn’t be friendlier, yet we still get the same reaction.
  • These villas and castles are VERY old … it is hard to fathom what life was like when they were filled with people from ancient times.
  • If you know Spanish, you will be fine with the language.
  • Ice is only given upon request. If you ask for "moto-ice" (lots of ice) you get 3 pieces.
  • There are NO refills on sodas. Huge bummer ... I love my diet coke (coke-lite) with lots of ice.
  • They loooOOve to smoke.
  • This is why travel is so much fun. You are out of your comfort zone and into the lives of another way of life.
  • If you have a chance, you should visit. No history class can teach you what you experience from being here your self.


Debbie said...

What awesome pictures!!!!!!!!I think it is so great that you are doing some traveling too!! God bless!!


Amber said...

That place looks great. Thanks for taking time out of your vacation to post.

Anonymous said...

You lucky girl! I finally remembered to check your blog and was happy to see all the updates. I just looooooove Italy! Your pictures are wonderful and it's so fun to live vicariously through you. Don't forget to eat dinner in Trestevere in Rome. You'll get some great pix there for sure.
Big hug!

Lisa and David said...

Debbie, Amber & Shere',
Thank you for your comments. So glad you're keeping up. It'll be good to get home and after I settle in, look back at these notes and pictures to remember what we did. We only have a day and half in Rome, but Shere' I will certainly go to that restaurant. Your recommendations are always right on! Hope all is well with y'all!

Mitchell Mischief said...

WOW! What spectacular sights. I'm so glad you 2 are able to experience this. I agree with you to enjoy your time together now as life will change in just 4 short days. Your alone times, especially in Italy, will be few and far between. Drink it all in. Love YA