About Me

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Delray Beach, FL, Westport, MA, United States
Undergraduate degree, Colby College; MA in teaching, Columbia Teacher's College; former high school English teacher in three states; former owner of interior design co. with advanced degree from R.I. School of Design. Published first book in 2009 titled, MINOR LEAGUE MOM: A MOTHER'S JOURNEY THROUGH THE RED SOX FARM TEAMS. Her humorous manuscript titled ELDERLY PARENTS WITH ALL THEIR MARBLES: A SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR THE KIDS was published in June, 2014. In 2015 A SURVIVAL GUIDE won a gold medal in the self-help category at the Florida Authors & Publishers Association conference. See website By CLICKING HERE.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Morning Walks on the Island of Ischia

     Sidewalks on roads hugging hillsides on Ischia, Italy, exist as a brief nod to the tourist, then disappear. Charley and I include a mandatory three-to-four-hour walk each day we travel, but it can be death-defying.
     One of our routes includes the main thoroughfare into the town of Forio.  We climb wooded paths over  the hillside behind our hotel and follow a road along the cliffs.  Our work is rewarded at the scenic


overlook.  Below us lie wide, sandy beaches, vineyards rising up the mountainside, and the bulls-eye fort in town across the Bay. From our perch, we wind down one-lane cobble-stoned streets that lead through a tunnel.  Since I can hear the traffic coming in either direction on the stones, I wait for silence before starting through.  Charley has charged ahead and waits in the shade of a cafe at one of the beaches.
     When I catch up with him, we proceed to the most difficult part of the walk.  We arrive at the main cog and cross to face traffic.
     In Italy, crosswalks are mere suggestions.  Mopeds, scooters, and motorcycles weave around pedestrians trying to get to the other side. Waddling widows in black take their time and receive deference. Charley decides that since crosswalks are meaningless, he'll cross where he pleases, including blind curves. He grabs my hand and holds his free hand up like a traffic cop, defying two lanes of traffic to stop or hit us. Our luck has held so far.

      The rest of the thoroughfare has no sidewalk until we reach the harbor.  Trucks loaded with cement or tour buses with faces frozen in glass whiz past at 45 mph.  We flatten ourselves against stone houses. The space between my feet and the traffic lane is six inches.
     Charley walks ahead, using a sideways pushing motion away from us.  He is certain that motorists coming out of the curves will see him swishing and make NASCAR moves in the fifty feet before we become decorations on the side of local buildings.
     In front of one market, a car is heading to claim a parking space.  It is the same space where Charley is walking.  "Hey, stop!" he yells to the female driver, who slows to within three feet of his upright palms.
     Out jumps Nana, with her grocery bag.  "Quoi?  Quoi?" Nana says.
     In other words, "What's your problem?  Don't you know my daughter owned a moped when she was six?"