mercoledì 29 dicembre 2010

Greater Naples

Well, today is the fourth day of our trip and the second day we have been in Italy. We drove into Lucino near Pouzzouli then took the train to Monte Santo, then to Vamaro; from there we went into greater Naples to go shopping. On our train ride we saw several street performers: one band performed a ragtime version of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" on accordion and guitar.  Another group played Red Hot Chili Italian, with an accordion. It was awesome.  We saw row upon row of pastries, entire streets dedicated to shoes, two little boys getting into a fist fight that was broken up by an ancient grandmother on a walker, penis shaped pastries, thousands of varieties of noodles, fresh olives, tripe, swordfish, eels, and squid!

Yes, this is a city with an APPETITE thongs ...short boots ... lacy bras...tall boots...cowboy boots ...suede boots...cannoli...huge fish...knock off Prada walking bars....street urchins...ancient buildings covered in graffiti...pasta...pasta...pasta...hanging sausage...polizia squeezing down an extremely narrow alley way...6th story mail being delivered in baskets tied to a lift string....a beggar asking for money because he's gotten a duck and a dog to be friends. whew--mi scuzzi! mi scuzzi! mi scuzzi!
prego! grazie! quanto costa? cinque. per favore!

This country is strangely enamored with the 7 dwarves.  We have seen them in quite a few yards.  They also listen to American pop music, but they don't speak english so they have no idea what they are saying.  At one coffee shop we went to yesterday, Jewel was playing; today we heard Lady Ga Ga.

We FINALLY got our first glorious cone full of gelato.  It was Nutella flavored.  We also went to a small pizzaria called Da Attilio where we each had our own pizza and coca cola.  Maegon had a margherita pizza and I had pizza with white sauce and SALAMI!  It was amazing!  I am completely in love with Italian food.  I could live here forever. When the Neapolitans do pastries they go BIG. We saw a savory pastry stuffed with hot dogs and french fries!! We did so much walking...on cobble, and it's hilly. They walk everywhere; we've decided that this saves them from obesity because these folks eat and eat well.

I am strangely obsessed with the laundry hanging from almost every balcony.  I took about 400 pictures of just that today.  My camera died halfway through our trip so I didn't get to capture all the amazing things we saw.  A lot of people here get their mail by lowering a basket from their balcony by rope and then pulling it back up.  It was almost like being in medieval times.

On the way home we stopped by the beach.  We could see the lights from Naples on the hills, and an island. The city lights and horizon were beautiful, but the beach was beyond littered--so sad. We were assured that they clean it up in the summer, however. Also, all throughout Naples, there are piles of trash that obviously haven't been picked up in weeks, but we were expecting much worse. The media may have sensationalized the trash problem. All of the visual charm is enhanced by the smell of POOP...with occasional gusts of fish, strong perfume, trash, sweet pastries, Euro body odors, and caffe'.  

Tomorrow, we are going to see Pompeii!

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