How excited am I to be back here for the first time since I celebrated my 23rd birthdAy back in 1982, at a crazy party at a trattoria in Positano! So excited! And this place is as stunning as I remembered.
We are staying at a no name bed and breakfast on the impossibly narrow winding road between Amalfi and Ravello. The only way we found it was because Roberto, who runs the b&b Punta Civita across the road, flagged the very crowded bus we were traveling in and my name was passed down through the bus in various accents until it reached us and we got off. We are staying with Roberto’s cousin tonight until our room opens up tomorrow at Punta Civita. No problemo! We have a spectacular view of the Mediterranean and the mountains and a sweet little wrought iron bed with cream colored curtains tied at the corners.
Our fast train from Rome took only two hours and I spent much of it talking to a very handsome Italian from Naples who travels the world selling liturgical vestments and other catholic stuff made by his family’s company. He was full of suggestions of what and where to eat here and in sicily, including the aeolian islands and judging from the wonderful little family run fish place we went to in Amalfi tonight, we are all set. Best spaghetti vongole (with clams) ever (thought of you dad!) and a fresh baked fish in a light olive oil, garlic sauce. Trattoria dei Cartari, bravo! For dessert we had tangy refreshing creme di limone at a tiny stand nearby serving 4 different iced lemon desserts.
In Salerno I had a great pizza Napolino (tomato sauce, capers, olives, anchovies, no cheese) at Atlantide, which seemed to be popular with well -heeled locals. The ferry was well worth the wait …a 35 minute ride hugging the coast and looking out at the occasional cluster of buildings clinging to the mountainside. we shared the open air deck with lots of well heeled Chinese young people and assorted other tourists.
Amalfi was packed with tourists but I am pleased to stay they seem far away now. From our b&b we walked down a crazy narrow steep set of stairs, hundreds of them, all stone, past people’s tiled and flowered terraces, past a lovely village church, through narrow white tunneled passageways to the small unaffected village of Atrani,where we found a tiny bar in an unlikely spot on the beach, tucked under a huge brick aqueduct/bridge. great spot for a beer and we met a nice couple from Northern Ireland who were former Londoners.
tomorrow we will go to ravello proper. Preferably by bus since it is a very steep climb otherwise. So happy to be back in a place I have longed to return!