Day ten: pandemonium
Salerno to Naples
My trip today took me to Naples. I’d be warned by people at home and here in Italy about Neapolitan drivers, so was prepped and alert – ready for the antics.
I didn’t mind the road rage so much, it’s kind of like being in a video game – a constant challenge with obstacles flying at you left, right and centre. I wasn’t perhaps prepared for it for my whole journey though – there was a slight hill to climb out of lovely, sleepy Salerno through relative tranquility, but soon after that, I was in the suburbs of Naples – it really is huge.
About 20km out of the city centre, the misery started. It wasn’t the cars (I’m used to cars from London, though of course it’s another level here), it was the cobbles. This was something I hadn’t been warned about. What could have been a pleasant (ish) ride was misery with relentless cobbles and one way streets which weren’t picked up on my GPS, forcing me to get lost and go around in circles, on the cobbles. Unlike Salerno, where you see tribes of men in lyrcas on their Bianchis, the bicycles here are few and far between. Those you do see are mountain bikes, or those ones with even fatter tyres, like tractors.
I’m now waiting for my Mum to arrive, who’s visiting for a long weekend. A few days off the bike is welcome – this weekend will be like a holiday. From what I could see (when not dodging pedestrians / scooters / cars / lorries), Naples looks beautiful, especially the old town. I’m very much looking forward to exploring – by foot only!
(No pics today – I didn’t dare take my hands of the handlebars).