Amalfi Coast (Naples)
Monday evening was a pretty rough day at sea. There were light gale force winds blowing directly across the ship causing it to gently (and sometimes not to gently) rock back and forth like a cradle. When we went to dinner in the private dining room at Palo a few folks didn’t show up due to “mal de mar” or however you say that in Italian. Then when the first course was served, one gal cancelled her entrÃ©e order because she couldn’t even eat a bite of the appetizer. Then before the entrees were served, two more people left the table. So our group of 14 eventually dwindled to 7.
Believe it or not, Mr. K was not one of the sick ones. Before we left Miami I had read on one the “boards” that Hyland’s Motion Sickness Remedy was really good. I don’t put a whole lot of store in homeopathic medicines, but whether it was psychological or actual, the stuff worked like a charm and we thoroughly enjoyed our dinners (albeit they were just a tad lighter than we might have had otherwise; taking no chances).
Today we were one of the first ones off the boat to meet our private driver for an all-day tour of the Amalfi Coast. A few months ago one of our group asked if someone wanted to share a private car and I jumped at the chance. Unfortunately his wife was one of the folks who was sea sick and decided not to accompany us. Fortunately, we still had an absolutely wonderful day.
Our tour guide (Carmine Ussano of Benvenuto Tours) was an outstanding and charming guide “¦and an expert driver which is extremely important given the narrowness of some of the roads. (Let me stress how narrow the roads are! Sometimes there was no more than two or three inches between us and a tour bus or us and a scooter or us and the car parked on the side of the road in the opposite direction.)
On the way out of the city we got a great view of Mt. Vesuvius with clouds surrounding the top. It really is exciting to see these locations you have heard about as a child.
I cannot begin to tell you how beautiful the drive was, some of the most magnificent scenery I’ve ever seen “¦and the lemons growing on trees in terraced gardens up and down an impossible mountainside were amazing. Unlike Palermo yesterday (bustling city), the villages along the Amalfi Coast are small, some having as few as 1000 inhabitants. We did not go into the largest city (Sorrento, not considered to actually be on the Amalfi Coast) which has about 16,000 people, but we visited the next city, Positano) with its beautiful town square and marketplace. Next stop was the city of Amalfi where we had no more than exited the car than we ran into Deb and Linda (dinner mates) who were on one of the Disney bus tours. We chatted for a minute or two and then went our own ways. The last city was Ravello whose claim to fame is its Lemoncello production.
We dodged a couple of showers during the day, but all-in-all it was a wonderful day with pastries and coffee in Positano and lunch of fresh fish in Amalfi.
Driver Carmine took an alternate route back into Naples and showed us many more little villages that were not so much “tourist” locations. Whether tourist or not, the whole area was amazingly beautiful with lemon trees, bougainvillea, oleanders and many other flowers all over the place. We also got a quick peek at two columns and an archway from the Pompeii archeological site “¦but when I say a quick peek, I mean about 2 seconds, if that, before it was hidden back behind the trees that have now grown all over the area.
Glo from Miami