Did I ever tell you about the insane bus ride into Amalfi? This is a full-sized bus, driving as fast as the narrow cliffside road will allow (sometimes faster). Every time it reaches a turn (these are right angle turns around the contours of the jagged mountain), the driver must stop, honk the horn and wait for a moment to make sure no other vehicle comes around before taking the turn with the wide, long body of the bus. It’s insane.
So, you’re on this bus for 3 hours, stopping and starting and honking and narrowly scraping by another bus and pretty sure someone is going to end up careening over the cliff. And you’re doing this in the dark, when you’re hot, tired and hungry. And you have no place to stay when you arrive, you’ll have to sleep under grape vines.
So, it came as a surprise and real slap in the face, when I learned there was a 20 minute ferry which took people from Sorrento to Amalfi constantly. You mean I didn’t have to experience that agonizing bus ride?! That’s right!
These are some views from the ferry. Above and below you can see another beachy inlet along the coast. This is where the locals and smart tourists stay. It’s less busy and more affordable… maybe you wouldn’t have to sleep in a vineyard.
Do you mean that if I had left Sorrento when it was light out, I would have arrived in Amalfi when it was still light out? And that on the way I would’ve seen these beautiful sights already, gotten to see them twice and not felt like puking in the back seat of a hot bus full of strangers? Yes, that’s what I mean.
And then I saw it, the unspoilt, naked mountains. A place I could picture myself falling into like a big, green, fluffy featherbed. The fog, I imaged as a fine mist, cooling me as I slept.
And then I would slide down that mounting, like it were a wet, soft luge. I would gain tremendous speed until I flew, arms outstretched, off the side of a cliff, suspended for a moment in nothingness, untouched, a breeze cooling me and keeping me aloft, free.
And then plunging, I would go, deep into the sea. Down, down until I stopped, suspended again, this time in an abyss of salty water. And I’d sleep, my friends. Oh, how I’d sleep.
I opened my eyes and I was still on the ferry and I saw this, another village tainting what was once a perfect, holy rock rising out of the waves. And yes, I cried, dear reader. I wept for Italy and I wept probably because I was generally overtired.
Below is a picture from the ferry just as it pushed off from Amalfi. It wasn’t hard to say goodbye. I knew I needed to go somewhere to take a break, sleep of the insanity of Amalfi. But where could that be?Stay tuned to find out!