By Lonneke — July 18, 2016 10:53 pm
Life flows on pleasantly here in Calitri. We have our trips and we have our groceries. I love going to the bakery, the butchery, the mozzarella seller and the greengrocer. Taking the time and stepping back in time for about fifty years. The woman of the greengrocer will often give us a little extra, she'll throw in a lemon or some parsley.
Driving to one of the main attractions in this region we were confronted with our preference for tranquility and authenticity once again. We were stuck in a traffic jam for an hour before we could drive onto the famous Amalfi Coastway. Being used to having the roads all to ourselves, we naively didn't count on this. The coastal road is pretty narrow, which obviously adds to the charm, but let's just say that not all Italians are aware of this fact. Upon approaching Amalfi it got more crowded and when we drove slowly through it, we looked at each other: oh no, we're not getting out of this car. There probably is a whole piece of beautiful coastline when you'd continue to Positano, but that would add another 1,5 hours to arrive in a place where we most likely wouldn't want to step out either. So we turned, looked for a place to park the car for a bit to stretch our legs and eat some bread. We drove to Erchie for a break at the beach, which was jam-packed as well. We forced ourselves to take a refreshing dip before climbing back into the hot car, then swiftly, back to our secluded home in Calitri.
Luckily our other trips were more to our liking again. At Lago di Conza we found an 'oasis' where WWF is protecting the area. The ranger kindly let our boys feed the turtles and storks and we wandered around the lake for a while.
Another time we decided to just drive around and we stumbled upon beautiful ruins of the city of Carbonara and the lake Lago di San Pietro. We had a gelato in Monte Verde and heading home we drove a dirtroad which normally is only used by the farmers on their tractors.
When I take an evening walk around Calitri, I will wave at a lovely gammer who's watching me from her old farm and I get a sense of belonging.
We will miss the sight of the dozens of orange footballs on the roof, which the local children can not collect, because they'll immediately crash through it. We will miss gelateria Jolly (whose owner came to get me at our house when I left my bag there) and "Buongiorno!" and "Buonasera!". We will miss walking out of town and immediately have views of sloping patchwork. We will miss our favourite outdoor-spot amidst the golden fields and hay bales. We will miss Radio KissKiss and all the Italian hits we can now phonetically bellow along.
And we will miss this dolce vita, where everything seems to have a larger portion of time available. Time is a strange concept and here, we feel like we have all the time in the world for every little thing, and at the same time there are so little must-do's in a day, yet at the end of the day time has flown by again. I guess it's this thing called 'now'; if you're in it, time reveals it's truly fickle nature.
As my friend wrote to me recently: before going on this journey, you know it'll fly by and you'll have the time of your lives. Then, in the middle, it seems to take longer than you thought it would. And now that it's time to go home time has hurtled by, as it does, when you're having fun, or when you're growing or experiencing adventures and tranquility intertwined. As it does, when you travel by jetpack.