31 August 2010

kyle week, part four

That night, Praiano was having its local White Night festival. I know I explained this about two years ago when I was in Madrid and got to experience their White Night, but you probably don't remember that, so this is what the White Night is all about: as you may or may not know, way up north, like say Sweden or Iceland, it pretty much doesn't get dark during the summer. Not even at night. They can stay up and party all they want, and obviously the southern nations get jealous. So they have one night or so a year, usually in late summer, where they stay up super late (if not all night) and party, so they can feel better about it.

Anyway, we wandered up to the center of Praiano (even if I try to explain the setup of this town, I don't think you'll get it, but just believe me when I say it was very steep and you couldn't go directly up except by narrow stairways) to check out the scene, and then decided to go by a pizzeria to get dinner before the music started. I think I had Kyle try American pizza, which would be tomato sauce, mozzarella, french fries, and wurstel or speck or something (those are both meats, btw). I also ordered every antipasto, or appetizer, that they had for him- a few arancini, some croquettes, basically one of each of the local specialties. The boy behind the counter recommended Nastro Azzurro to drink, so we had a bottle of that as well. My pizza was probably vegetarian or something.

After dinner, we made the trek back up to the town center. There we found the townspeople finishing up their buffet style dinner. Eager for Kyle to try some more foods he could only taste in Italy, I bought a ticket, and loaded him up a plate with beans and clams, potatoes and squid, stuffed tomatoes, and local desserts. Turns out Kyle hates seafood, but I made him taste everything anyway. Turns out he still hates seafood. I had the tomatoes though, and they were delicious.

Later, a band came on, featuring a whole lot of drummers playing a whole lot of different drums. Around eleven or so we left, because it had been a long day, and we needed to be packed and ready to go the next morning. Apparently the band walked up and down the streets of the town that night, banging their drums, but I was out cold, completely exhausted.

The next morning, we were out of there by 10 or so to try and catch the bus nice and early. It was about a half hour wait, but eventually we arrived in Sorrento once more, and there we stopped for pizza. Kyle was feeling rather tame and only got prosciutto on his (along with mozzarella and tomato sauce), but I ordered the mimosa, which at that pizzzeria consisted of sauce, cheese, arugula, and corn. I love corn here for some reason. Then I ran over to grab some gelato at the Sweet Sorrento gelateria (it's on the piazza just down from the train station and I highly recommend it if you're ever in Sorrento). I asked the guy how many flavours he could put in one cup and he was like, "Well maybe I could give you about four?" and I was like, "How about five?" and he goes "CINQUE GUSTI?!" like it was the most mind-blowing thing he'd ever heard in his life. Fortunately, he acquiesced, and I filled the cup with blueberry muffin, strawberry, hazelnut, banana, and another flavour which I can't remember. The guy had to weigh it by the kilogram to determine how to charge me, and to add insult to injury, he only gave me one spoon. I had to point out that I was not the only one who would be enjoying this gelato, and ask for another spoon.

Long story short, strawberry is now Kyle's favourite gelato flavour, we caught our train back to Napoli, and then we caught our next train (the fabulous Frecciarossa!) back to Roma. Then we hailed a cab (only 6 euro, and so much more convenient than walking) and found our next hostel. I proceeded to pass out for a few hours, and then we went out for kebabs and another gelato, and just wandered around the neighborhood. We were nice and close to a big park, and also Santa Maria Maggiore, which is a beautiful and famous church. We saw a little girl talk on a cell phone for longer than I've ever seen a little girl talk on a cell phone, and basically we were trying to imagine what the conversation was like. That's how we entertain ourselves, I guess, by doing weird things like that.

The next day was a little something I like to call Vatican Day. We had some grand plans in mind, like going to this place, or seeing that, but we got started about an hour after we intended to, and decided to shorten things up by actually paying for one of those tours of the Vatican (something I swore I'd never do). It was fairly informative, but we just wanted to kill the guide the whole time, and I think that her incessant babbling cancelled out whatever time we saved by not having to wait in line. Basically, by the time we got out of the Vatican, it was three o'clock, roughly the time I'd said we'd go back to the hostel to pick up our luggage, but we were so hungry we just didn't care.

Kyle wanted to go to the Hard Rock Cafe. I said okay, but I thought it would be such a touristy thing to do. And maybe it was. But when I was inhaling nachos and mashed potatoes and macaroni and cheese for the first time in two months, I really didn't care. It was actually pretty incredible, and my mouth is watering right now just thinking about those nachos. So good.

Then it was back to the hostel to pick up our bags, and onto the train station to head out to the airport to our final hostel. This one was right off the beach, so we got to spend that final evening relaxing and taking jumping pictures in the sunset. Ideal.

The next morning, Kyle flew away from me and back to America, and I think that's basically the end of Kyle Week!

Next up: Baiardo/Nice week! Plus maybe some pics. . .

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