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Report 1396: Roman Holiday

By Doug Phillips from Canada, Fall 2007

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Page 11 of 16: Monday September 11 – Nightmare in Naples / One Night on Capri

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View from our terrace on Anacapri

Early in our planning, we had decided on a mini-vacation within our holiday in Rome – two days on the island of Capri. I had been twice before, BW once – both over 30 years ago. We thought we would all enjoy a couple of days away from Rome after more than a week in the city. I had booked two nights at Hotel Senaria in Anacapri. The hotel is at the end of the centro storico of the village on a small laneway, Via Follonaci. BW & I had purchased our train tickets to Naples a few days earlier at the Termini in Rome. We also familiarized ourselves with the layout of the Termini, so there wouldn’t be any problems catching our early morning train south. When we arrived in Naples around 10:30am, we decided to purchase our return tickets, then proceeded outside to take the tram to Molo Beverello where we could catch the ferry to Capri. Tram 01 was clean and bright and only partially full with a mixture of tourists like ourselves, and young and older locals. At the port we purchased tickets for the ferry that was departing in a few minutes. So far everything had proceeded smoothly, but that changed in an instant.

“Doug, I can’t find my purse!” broke the spell.

BW has traveled for years with a small fabric purse, usually hanging from her neck in front, with one hand on the purse or very nearby. Today, she stuck it in the bottom of a larger bag as we left the train terminal in Naples. And now it was gone. It had been stolen, most likely on Tram 01. Our ferry was about to depart. We got on board and tried to assess the damage on the ride over to Capri. We lost a small amount of money ... a few Rome bus tickets ... our train tickets back to Rome ... a credit card, health card and driver’s license ... one of the keys to our apartment in Rome ... and BOTH our passports. Using our new mobile phone we immediately canceled the stolen credit card, but we were at a loss about what to do about our passports. Most fortunately, Steve had brought along a Lonely Planet Guide to Western Europe, which he had used on his previous hostel-based trips. The guide included a number for the Canadian Embassy in Rome. I phoned, explained what had just happened and sought advice on what to do. One of the complications was that we were booked on a flight to Paris in three days.

As a result, we spent only one restless evening in Anacapri, including a couple of hours in the carabineri station filing a police report, which we needed to get new passports. We did manage to take the ski lift to Mont Solaro at the top of the island where we enjoyed some spectacular views. But I have now been on Capri three times and I have still not made it to the Blue Grotto. Next time for sure.

From Monte Solaro, Capri

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