Well, it’s been a while since I last posted but I’m back with some lovely pictures of my holiday so I hope you’ll forgive me fairly quickly 🙂 As you may have seen from my Facebook page, I recently went on a short break with my husband to Portofino in Italy, which is a fishing village on the Italian Riviera coastline just south-east of Genoa. It is famous for its picturesque harbour and the wonderful seafood available in its restaurants, and perhaps a little infamous for its celebrity visitors who arrive in their luxury yachts.
As it is a pedestrian village, we decided to forego the hire car and to travel by public transport from Genoa airport instead. This involved a bus, a train and finally, another bus into the village itself. This sounds much simpler than it actually was! We had to negotiate the machines at Genoa train station for our journey to Santa Margherita Ligure by way of Rapallo first of all. Once we’d done that, we made our way to Rapallo, experiencing a short delay on the journey but arriving safely at the other end. Unfortunately, the short delay meant that we missed our connection and we finally worked out that the next train wouldn’t be for another hour because it was Sunday.
In true British form, we huffed and puffed, and analysed every aspect of what had happened and then suddenly, one of us said, ‘It really doesn’t matter, does it? We’re not in a hurry. We’ll get there when we do.’ And with that profound declaration, our shoulders relaxed and we went with the flow as everyone else on the train platform was doing. We were amazed to hear such a variety of accents in the train station: Americans, other British travellers, local Italians and everything in between. When we reached Santa Margherita, we had just missed the ferry we were planning to take (this is Italy!) but there was a bus waiting to take us on the coastal ride of our lives and we hopped on and went with it arriving only a few minutes later than we had first planned.
Having checked into our lovely hotel, we were then overwhelmed by beautiful views and fantastic restaurants at every turn for the next few days to our complete and utter delight. It was magical and we fell in love with it – just like the song. You can listen to and watch Andrea Bocelli singing his version of the famous song here. What? You didn’t know there was a song?! 😉 And then on our way back on the boat from Santa Margherita on our last day, we were treated to another unexpected musical delight.
As we were waiting to board the ferry for our return trip to Portofino, we had heard someone playing an accordion but we couldn’t see where they were and then again, we wondered if we had imagined it! Then, in the middle of our trip back, sat on the upper deck, a man stood up…with an accordion. He started to play and everyone around started to sing but not in Italian, or in English but in Polish! We had no idea that was the language at first but the man next to us pointed to one of his group who had the words to the song on a sheet in her hands and when we looked over her shoulder, we could see it was an eastern European language and our neighbour proudly told us how he and his group had learnt the words in Polish to the famous song, ‘I Found My Love in Portofino.’ Well, to say we were gobsmacked is an understatement. It was so lovely to see such happy people, enjoying themselves by singing their hearts out and they didn’t just sing the one number, they carried on singing traditional Polish songs as well. We could only imagine how wonderful it must have been to hear the singing from the harbour in Portofino.
They say that travel is good for the soul and I firmly believe that. This trip was inspirational in many ways and I’m pretty sure that Portofino, or somewhere like it, will make an appearance in one of my books one day 😉
Thanks for reading as always. Do leave me a message in the comments about the places you have been, at home or abroad, that you have found inspirational.