Yesterday, my son was still on and off with a slight fever and needing more rest, but overall much better. Today is back to normal with rolls of laughter, eating hungrily, and sleeping soundly. We are in Amalfi now. We had a frustrating day yesterday trying to decide where to go, how to find an apartment with what we needed (a fridge, a terrace, Wifi), and finally I decided it was worth a try to check the place I had been dreaming about. A little apartment in Amalfi center right next to the beautiful bell tower, up several flights of narrow stairs, to a panoramic view of ocean, lemon trees, mountainside, town lights. So I walk into the town center (while Chris and Bodhi idle in the car) and use my intuitive senses. We rented this small apartment eight years ago, on our last trip through Amalfi in April 2003. I remember we rented it from a man named Andrea, who worked in the town photo shop, who was a photographer. So I made my way to the photo shop and asked for him. Oh yes, they said, we know who you are talking about - he worked here before, and he is around town but no longer working here. His sister Maria works in a small souvenir shop by the bus depot. I walk over to the bus depot and inquire: Maria Lucebello? until I find her and explain that I would like to rent an apartment from her family, if possible. She looks a little puzzled, like obviously they are not advertising this place much, and calls her brother. Yes, you can stay, she says, and it is a nice price. Brother Andrea comes to meet me while Chris tries mightily to find a place to park the car (quite difficult in Amalfi in the summertime). He takes me to the apartment and I am realizing that you really do, over time, emphasize the good parts and forget the hassles of past travel experiences; and when you go back to a place, you see all the good and the bad aspects again. Like the million stairs we have to climb to get to the apartment with the nice terrace by the bell tower. I guess I remembered the two flights up once you reached the family's home, but forgot about the 4 staircases leading up to it. Utoh, Chris is not going to be pleased with how far he has to haul all of our gear. Traveling with a baby, you also are aware of a different set of foci than prior to a baby. Like my god, the terrace is totally unsafe. I have to watch him constantly as the slats are wide and it drops down two hundred feet to the beach & town below. Babyproofing new places all of the time takes ingenuity and STAYING IN OLD ITALIAN APARTMENTS REQUIRES VIGILANCE. For example, today, I saw our son pulling on the gas hose behind the stove. We had to cinch two wooden spoons between the cabinet doors to keep him from being able to get the cleaning supplies. And like I said, the front door stays shut at all times, due to the precarious stairs and the loosely fenced terrace.
But ahh, we are in Amalfi. And life is good. After the bags are all settled and the baby is sleeping, Chris and I are sipping our ice cold glasses of limoncello overlooking one of the best vistas in the world.