So, immediately upon returning to Rome from Morocco, we hit the rails and took a train south to the Amalfi Coast, where we would meet up with my family for Christmas. When I was a child, we lived in southern Italy for three and a half years, and had not been back all together since I was twelve. Some time last summer when my sister Emily was visiting Portland, we got the idea of renting a house in Italy for Christmas. So often, ideas like that just stay fantasy, but this time I guess we were all motivated, and we actually made it happen it! Yay, us!
At first I envisioned a pastoral Tuscan farmhouse or something like that, but the weather decided us for the Amalfi Coast, which has a pretty similar climate to Southern California. Basically, we didn't want to freeze! So we rented a house in Positano. Ah, Positano.
Jim and I were here the summer we got engaged, and when we play the game "O Where in Italy Will Our Villa Be?" the answer is: Positano. Like Venice, it is one of those places that seems to exist for postcards. It's so pretty it's slightly surreal.
The villa we settled on -- Casa Carolina -- is inside the little circle below:
I can't even begin to tell you, the views from the terraces . . .
I am in my soul a sea girl. I grew up always by the sea, and my happiest childhood years were spent by this sea, but it's been a long time since I lived at the coast, and I have never lived with an unobstructed view of the ocean. It is a sublime thing, to always have the sea before you.
The house itself. The agency photos looked great, but you never quite know what you're going to find. I was sure it wouldn't suck, in any case. But I was blown away by how much better it was than I expected.
Here's the front door. Welcome.
Beautiful crisp white throughout.
That terrace. So fabulous.
Let me out!!!
Dining room. LOOK at that fireplace. Have you ever seen a cooler fireplace? And you can't even see the coolest part: it has a passage that wraps all the way behind it!
Our first meal of many at Casa Carolina, supplies bought at the tiny markets up the steps.
The rest of my family should have arrived that day as well, but you might recall what was happening in European airports the week before Christmas. Oh man. So they were scattered hither and thither, sleeping on floors at Schipol and Frankfurt where they were stranded without connections, and ultimately without luggage. So that first day and night, it was just us rattling around in the big old house. We did get dibs on bedrooms, ha ha! We didn't choose the most beautiful, with the stunning view (saved that for my parents). We chose the quietest and most remote, where we wouldn't have to share a bathroom with the teenagers :-)
The next morning, waiting for the others, we had a nice wander down into town.
And I do mean down into town. Positano is a city of stairs.
Venice has canals, Positano has stairs. Hundreds. It is not a place for the lazy!
To the beach! Love the way the tiled duomo looms over the beach.
Looking through the trip photos, Clementine is asleep on Jim's chest in a lot of them.
She was napping-on-the-move kid.
More Positano -- and also Amalfi, Ravello, Sorrento, and Vietri Sul Mare -- to come!