Tuesday, 8 September 2009

rilievografia: 'letterpress' in Italian

Good news is that I'm finally getting back to EST. Bad news is that I miss the tasty dishes in Salerno! For the many things I've heard about the Amalfi coast, the most has been about how expensive it is to visit. We found that isn't necessarily so. Staying in Salerno helped to make the trip affordable while giving us an opportunity to be amongst the locals. It seemed like we were the only tourists in the city. And while that gave us an authentic experience, it had it's stressful moments. Luckily, my husband learned some important key phrases and words before we left and it got us pretty far once we landed in foreign territory. The photo above was taken on the main shopping strip in Salerno, called Via Mercanti. Once siesta was over, the street came alive with shoppers, idle strollers, the old and the young.

From Salerno, we were able to get to the major attractions by either bus, train or ferry. Day trips were of Amalfi, Positano and Paestum. We also passed by Minori, Maori and Ravello. Staying in these cities would've broken the bank! One of our favorite picturesque towns (pebbly beach included) is Positano. It had the nicest ocean views and towering cliff side buildings. The shopping promenade was on cobblestone streets and steps and it was just my kind of thing. We had read in the tourist guide about a few shops that would make leather sandals for you on the spot. I was tempted to buy but instead stole a snapshot.

Back in Salerno, I came across a tipographia ("printers"). The Italian word for 'printers', alone, had me at hello. I was only able to sneak a shot here and didn't want to disturb the man. That and I probably would've lost my mind if he invited me to see what looks like to be a press in his shop.

Our last night in Italy was in Rome. We only had time to do a red bus tour and thank goodness for that. By that time we had just about enough of trying to figure out how to get around that we just wanted to relax and let someone else do the thinking for us. I was captivated by the usual suspects (St. Peter's, Colosseum, Vatican) but more so by the gigantic sculptures. In my days of studying art history I had only seen these in books and on slide film.

The morning we left, I got up early and roamed the quiet streets of Rome. I felt that I hadn't taken enough pictures and searched for some opportunities that were a little less site seeing stuff and more street level stuff. I took my Holga (which probably contained exposed film - a story that I don't want to relive) and my digital. Below was the last shot I took on our trip.

Glad to be home and I've been bitten by the travel bug. Maybe off to Paris or London where the language is a little bit more familiar to us!

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