Thursday 28 June 2018


Theresa and Irfan have taken me on many holidays over the years.
Extraordinary trips I never even bucket listed - the Gold Coast in Australia, where I flirted with skippy kangaroos, Nikoi Island in Indonesia where they got married and I adorned my hair with hibiscus and recited wedding poetry, Bali, twice - twice!! Rice fields, ancient carvings, fresh mango salads, gentle harmonious people. So I decided I wanted to take Theresa somewhere she hadn't been before. Irfan had to mind Rafi and Bella, so it could only be half a gift. But girls' trips are fun in a very special way. 
I tussled between Greece (too scorchingly hot?), Dubrovnik (a walled city, enclosed), and of course, Italia. Florence was my first choice but there were no direct flights from Stansted, and knowing Theresa had already navigated Heathrow coming from Singapore, I plumped for Napoli. 
Naples gets a raw deal by tourists who compare it unfavourably to the Amalfi Coast, and I, being perfectly suggestible, believed the critics and planned accordingly to spend as little time as possible in Naples.
We left home at 4:30am. Salvatore, our guide, picked us up at Naples Airport. He was jacketed in the sweltering heat and fancied himself the perfect gentleman. He swarmed with compliments for Theresa, 'Bellissima! Bellissima! You are gorgeous woman! Macedonia! (translation: mixed fruit salad). It was amusing to begin with, and we giggled at the back, but hours of it left both of us uncomfortable and ready to leap from the vehicle dragging our suitcases away from Sal's seductions (and endless Bocelli renditions of 'Dancing in the Dark'...) 

But first Pompeii. Salvatore deposited us in the arms of Gianni, of the bright blue shirt, tight white trousers and heavy perfume. Guideless, Pompeii would have defeated us, even though I suppose one could simply follow other tourists and other guides, but I was glad for Gianni and his oft-repeated 'And don't forget one thing...' Pompeii is tourism central, but there was something moving about us modern day folk walking on the same stones as the ghosts of ash consumed Pompeiians. Some tourists walk barefoot to feel that same memoried ground. Others weep before the bodies of people and animals exhumed in mid flight, mid hopeless flight, from their choking home.

What surprised me about Pompeii was the green. What didn't surprise me was the heat. Surely Athens could not have been hotter?

So that when we finally returned to the car (and Sal's charm offensive) it was cool glory to feast our eyes on the Bay of Naples. Even Mt Vesuvius, destroyer of a city, looked less threatening... we wound past Sorrento, and down down down to Hotel Buca di Bacco in Positano. Theresa swam almost immediately upon our arrival, on Spiaggia Beach, hoping for warm waters but alas... and then we cooled our heels in the waters on Fornillo Beach. 

Are we really here?!!


Sherry Blue Sky said...

How lovely to see you gals having such a wonderful time! YAY! Enjoy every minute!

Badger’sWoodCoco said...


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