Monday, 8 October 2012

A little bit of paradise ...

Early on Thursday morning we had a knock at the door. It was our hire care to take us The airport to pick up our car. Why you ask?? I wouldn’t drive in Rome , and as the Apartment offered Hire car to and from the airport we thought why not.
Europcar was excellent. When we arrived at Ciampino airport our Renault Scenic and GPS were waiting to be checked out by us. Yeah....
Then the reality hit....Oh dear, we now have to navigate on the wrong side of the road for the next few weeks. I was quietly panicking....Then Dermot said..”Lets Pray”. We drove out of the dirt car park very cautiously.  It took me a while to work out that we needed to cross a round about going right and Left turns were with the traffic, and not against it..I think the passenger seat panel still has nail marks were I tried to shrink the car to fit the road..
We hit our first toll. There were about 20 or 30 more for us to use yet...
St Maria Gorretti

The Basilica of St Maria Gorretti
We headed south to stop eventually in Sorrento via Nettuno. Why There you ask? Well St Maria Goretti’s incorrupt body is there in a lovely Chapel area below the main church..Wow...She was so small, being only 12. Such deep Faith at her age. Such forgiveness. I  hadn’t discussed her death very much with Brid as I felt she was not ready.
On the way to Nettuno, which is on the coast, we discussed her life, her Death and the conversion of Allessandro. Quite a remarkable story.  We spent a few hours at Nettuno at the Crypt as well as by the shoreline, before heading to our destination for 2 nights.
Sorrento, Iyaly
We drove past Napoli- Naples. The country side was distinctly different. Many Roads through the mountains and buildings with flat roofs. I asked Dermot to view a You tube of the drive to Sorrento from Naples. He didn’t want to, so it was me who was quite nervous negotiating the very very narrow roads, the traffic and the motorbikes just doing there own thing. Not following and rules at all, but they did get out of the way when they needed to...
Sorrento is a town high the mountain tops overlooking the Mediterranean.  It is sprinkled with beautiful Churches and many hotels, restaurants and is known for its seafood. The beaches were roped off and they paid to use the beaches. This gave them the privilege of using their own beach lounge and at another cost an umbrella, on a stony beach- give me our beautiful beaches any day. But the history and the atmosphere was so very different to our own.
St Anne, Sorrento
St Anne is the Patron of Sorrento. She has a little church close to where we stayed, which we dropped into Pray, especialy for Friend.
We ate at a restaurant where the owner, a very sweet Italian Lady, had a deep devotion to Our Lady. She had been to Medjugorje and has miraculous medals in a bowl that she hands out and statues, oh so many of Our Lady. There was a beautiful on at the very end of her restaurant overlooking the sea....She called Brid Marys Angel- bringing the message to everyone who needs to hear it.

Mt Vesuvius
While we were in Sorrento our major interests where to go to Pompeii and just look around. After going through yet another toll on our way to Pompeii we arrived to a rather leafy area, with a dirt car park and not a lot of signs to say where the Scavi- excavations were, but around the corner was the entry. Its quite touristy but a must see for this part of the world. After a morning being  absorbed in the history in the heat with little shade, Dermot announced lets see Mt Vesuvius !! Off we went to in these huge army type massive 4wds buses to almost the summit, then a walk of only 500 metres, but the tail wound around the mountain making it a much longer walk than you would expect. The view from the top was amazing, and too see a volcano that is classed as quite dangerous because it hasn’t erupted for many many years was a little scary.
This was our last evening in Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast, next was the 4 to 5 hour drive to  Assisi...