The Amalfi Coast and the Isle of Capri are the kind of places where you want to yell at everyone walking their dog on the street, chatting it up at the grocery store or doing their laundry on their balcony, “Hey, you actually live here! Not fair!”
With all of the places that Radek has avowed to live someday (most are in Italy) there will simply be no time for anything else. Of course the latest in that long list is the Amalfi Coast. For me, I am in total agreement that it is breathtaking and charming, but the terrifying coastal drive is a bit off putting. I’m just not that into riding in a bus that is backing up towards a cliff so a dump truck can go by on a one-and-a-half-lane switchback road. But once you arrive you are a) stunned by beauty and b) happy to be alive. It’s just not something I’d want to do on my morning commute.
We balanced the beauty out with a visit to the ruins. First, the Roman city of Pompeii and second, the modern city of Naples. Pompeii has a good excuse to be in ruins since it was destroyed and preserved by volcanic ash in 79AD. Naples is ruinous under the weight of so many inhabitants, sleazy street vendors and an apparently hit-or-miss trash collection system. A less compelling set of excuses to be sure, we left Naples immediately and headed back to Europe.
The next day we took real estate envy to a whole new level in Capri, where the villas all have views of limestone sea stacks and perfectly cliched turquoise water. To add insult to injury, in many cases, it appeared as though nobody was home. These are probably vacation homes, enjoyed for a fraction on the year. I volunteer to enjoy them year round, if only given the chance.
I offer the attached photos as proof of the lack of hyperbole in this journal, except in the case of Naples, where I was afraid to take out my camera.