Black sand

The holiday wind down phase. It always happens to us. Get to the last couple of days and all we really want to do is nothing…then go home.

Had some really weird dreams last night. One involving lots of corpses returning to their graves before sunrise (I was in a car that had to negotiate a highway through them) and one about a night at the theatre where I became involved in the audience participation and was an instant hit. Oddly enough the big guy from My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss (the one who sold Crystal champagne and came second) was one of the actors. There were lots more but I can only remember those two. I don’t think this has anything to do with our holiday.

Went to breakfast – just coffee today as I ate far too much last night – then down to Marina Piccolo to check out the tiny church of Maria SS del Soccorso who seems to be remembered for hitting little kids with a big stick. The church is very small but very peaceful (if you ignore the stick thing) and I sat and contemplated the horrid touristy world outside for a bit before heading off to Marina Grande, the true Sorrento of yesteryear.

Maria with stick

Well, I’ve found the beauty of Sorrento, the men fixing their fishing nets, the lovely seaside taverna, people who actually speak Italian and enjoy it. It’s down a winding staircase and is called Marina Grande. There is a beach of volcanic sand (it’s black but otherwise exactly like normal sand. This actually makes me wonder if the glass made from volcanic sand is naturally dark. I’ll have to remember to ask Nigel as he’s the glass blowing expert.

Marina Grande

In the Marina Grande there is the little church of Santa Anna. It was built in the 19th century, so it’s quite new but it nestles beautifully over the road from the fishermen and their boats.

Santa Anna

If anyone wants advice on where to get away from it all but still be within coo-ee of the tourist side of Sorrento, this is it. Of course you have to have pretty strong legs as it’s a hell of a hike back up but this just ensures that this place will never become as awful as Marina Piccolo. There are no buses either and only the one road in and out. Bliss!

I climbed back out, reluctantly, and managed to find something suitably tacky for Karen and a pressie for Stevie before heading back to the hotel. Mirinda had moved to the rooftop for a coffee so I joined her for a quick beer…or two. Then we hit Sorrento for lunch.

It was very busy today but we managed to find a lovely restaurant called Il Pozzo which specialises in seafood – neither of us had any seafood – and very good service. Would recommend this place as the prices are also reasonable. I think it’s a family business. And Italians eat there! Always a good sign. Which reminds me, apart from an odd kebab shop, there appears to be no Chinese, Indian, Japanese or any other nationality of eatery in Sorrento. I guess this means the locals always eat Italian when they go out. This is, of course, disregarding the places that sell English food!

I finally bought two bottles of Limoncello (one cream, one not) having found the cheapest and the best and we returned to the hotel for our siesta.

Dinner was once more in the best restaurant in Sorrento, Sant’Antonino and a fine feast was had. They were even pleasant when Mirinda asked to move tables because of the smoke puffers next to us. Afterwards we wandered down to the Villa Communale for our now traditional tea and coffee and then back to the hotel.

I decided I’d go into Naples tomorrow and visit the National Archaeological Museum.

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