Travel slowly, staying in vacation rentals (villas, farms, cottages, apartments)
Report 105: 10 Days in Sicily
By Shannon from CA, Fall 2000
Page 4 of 4: Part 4 - Last Days
Driving down the mountain from Erice, I have two days and two nights left and no plan. I know I want to stay near the Palermo airport the last night so I can make my short trip to Venice so I just head in that direction.
I stop in San Vito, a cute beach tourist town, and since it is late September it is pretty quiet. I stop in front of a jewelry store, see a bracelet I want, so I go in. Inside there is a desk with three guys sitting there and the whole desk is covered with a pile of jewelry like the one in the Pirates of the Caribbean at Disneyland. They look at me, I look at them. I leave, they go back to talking about whatever houses they had robbed the day before. It was very weird.
I get back in my car, drive through Castellmare del Golfo (sp?) and then on to a tiny beach village. The beach was attracting me, I wanted to lie on the beach, so I decided to stay. Stopped at hotel #1, nobody there, the maid tells me to come back in an hour. Stopped at hotel #2, they are completo. So I go to eat in the square. I really like the town, it is so tiny, and everyone knows each other, but they leave me alone. The postman rides a scooter. It is very hot and I eat big noodles with clams and a salad and drink some wonderful white wine – the lunch costs something obscene like $8. After lunch I go back to hotel #1 and they are completo – in this tiny town?
I only have one more option and I really want it to work out, so I step into this strange pensione with fishing nets all over the floor (and they were being used – that was obvious.) A lovely young woman tells me yes, they have a room, for L. 50.000. YES! I say. She asks, don’t I want to see it first? I say OK and she shows me the room which has a cot and a candle and a view of the sea. YES! I say. I change into my suit and walk down a cliff to the sea, it is very beautiful there, very quiet and a bit cloudy so not too hot. You can feel that the season is shifting from summer to fall. I stay there for the rest of the afternoon, then it starts to look like rain, so I go back to get ready for dinner.
It rains. Then it stops, and I make my way to a restaurant around the corner from my room with a cot. I sat outside on a terrace, overlooking the sea. The place is filled with tourists, American and German, and six or seven cats are waiting to fight it out for scraps. The lone waiter is running and breaking things because he is so swamped – I chill out with my wine and prepare to spend many hours there – what else am I going to do? The dinner was just OK – nothing like the fat noodles with clams earlier in the day, but the air was intoxicating, it smelled like wet cement, and there was a murmur of foreign voices all around me. I was pretty danged happy there, I have to say, hard to believe that only 24 hours earlier I was in the restaurant with the screaming chef and the scientists, in Erice.
The next day is my last. I know I want to see the Temple and Theater at Segesta and then find someplace to stay near the airport, so I head towards Segesta. I get there, park, look way, way up the mountain to the theater, then check out the Temple. It is perfect, and I get some great photos with no people in them.
Then I walk up the mountain. It is a tough walk and my heel breaks, and when I get to the top I see a shuttle bus driving up! Those Greek babes must have been pretty fit. Or did they get carried by slaves? These are the things I am wondering as I walk up that huge hill. I still feel good for walking it, and it is totally worth it. The theater is being renovated so I can’t go in, but I can see plenty, also there were a lot of really cute workman eating their lunch. We were so high up that felt I was looking at the entire island. I checked Segesta out completely and then had a lunch of substandard pizza (like a Stouffers thing) in the snack bar. The waiter was super cute, and he gave me "the look" without being obnoxious – but I had to go. Things always happen at the wrong time.
On to find my last lodging for the night. I find a big, very modern place near the airport and they have a pool – perfect. My room has acrylic furniture and German MTV – super-perfect! It is an ultra cool sendoff.
I go down to the pool and try to put my thoughts together about this trip. I feel my trip has been: successful, scary, riveting, lonely, tearful (good and bad tears), beautiful, full of music, 2 new friends, and I am proud that I did it alone. You try driving here! And the following day I am going to Venice for four days to see friends and to "be home" before coming home.
My last night in Sicily I eat in the hotel restaurant where there are lots of German tourists. I have a decent meal and then go to the bar where a combo with a sax and a keyboard play. They are pretty good, playing "How Deep is Your Love" by the Bee Gees and that sort of thing. On their break the sax player swaggers over to me and says "You like Coltrane?" This is his pick up line, but actually I love Coltrane, so we talk about music for a while then I go upstairs. The news says there is aqua alta in Venice, and I have a broken heel, but I don’t care, because I am going home to Venice.
|Car Rental||Hotel Booking||Flight Booking||Train Tickets||Books, Maps, Events|
|Europe Cell Phones||Long Distance Cards||Luggage, etc.||Travel Insurance||Classifieds|
Copyright © 2000 - 2013 SlowTrav.com, unless noted otherwise. Slow Travel® is a registered trademark. Contact Slow Travel