About Me

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Delray Beach, FL, Westport, MA, United States
Undergraduate degree, Colby College; MA in English, Columbia Teacher's College; former high school English teacher in three states; former owner of interior design co. with MA from R.I. School of Design. Barking Cat Books published my first book in 2009 titled, MINOR LEAGUE MOM: A MOTHER'S JOURNEY THROUGH THE RED SOX FARM TEAMS. My 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. In 2018 Barking Cat Books published my SURVIVING YOUR DREAM VACATION: 75 RULES TO KEEP YOUR COMPANION TALKING TO YOU ON THE ROAD. See website By CLICKING HERE.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Snapshots from Italy I - A Return to Ischia

This is dedicated to the memory of those who perished this week in the terremoto (volcano) of central Italy. May they rest in peace.

For seventeen years we have visited the Italian island of Ischia.
Aragonese Castle   474 B.C.
The island faces Capri and is a 45-minute hydrofoil ride across the sea from Naples. Every year the general manager, Giovanni, at our hotel and the staff at the front desk (Mena, Pino, Salvatore, Britt) welcome us to our favorite room high on the hillside behind the lobby. Our knees get creakier each year as we ascend the endless stone steps and descend to the lobby, dining terrace, pool, and sea.

Down to the pool and sea
Pool and tower rooms

Each evening we dine al fresco (and each morning we walk miles to work off the pasta). From the hotel's dining terrace we watch the splendor of lavender, orange, and pink sunsets fade over fishing boats returning to their ports far below.

Dining terrace with two hungry seagulls
A surprise anniversary cake overlooking sunset
One evening at dinner a couple from Birmingham, England, approached our table.  "I couldn't help but overhear," the woman said, "that you've been here before."

"Yes, it's our seventeenth time on the island," Charley said.  "We love it here!"

"We've been twice before to this hotel and love it because it's only a three-hour plane ride from London to Naples. We're half-way through our ten days. Where are you from?"

"Delray Beach, Florida, and the coast of Massachusetts."

The next day we walked along the main street in the town below the hotel, Lacco Ameno.  We stopped to talk when we saw the Englishman standing outside one of the shops. "Wife's inside, buying out the place," he said.  We could see her bent over a glass case of coral jewelry.

Disguised in dark glasses and a baseball cap, Charley shook the Englishman's hand.  "We're staying at the Mezzatorre, where you're staying," Charley said.

The Englishman looked at him without recognition.  "Oh, you're from the States?"

"Yes, we're from Delray Beach, Florida."

"Funny, I just met another guy from Delray Beach who's staying at our hotel."
Harbor in Lacco Ameno, Ischia
That's the story of Charley's face - everyone thinks he's someone else. One time a guy in an airport stared at him across the terminal while we waited for our flight. Finally he screwed up his courage and approached Charley.  "I think I know you. Didn't I go to high school with you in Omaha, class of '69?"

Charley graduated from high school in Fall River, Massachusetts, and it was definitely not in '69!