Landing back in Sicily, or the motherland as my father calls it, made me so happy. Everyone is gorgeous, the weather is amazing and there is something about Mt Etna looming in the distance that is inviting. Ian picks me up and immediately hands me a cannoli. Perfect way to continue my birthday.
Our plans for the night are drinks with Silvia and Valerio who became my ragazzi last summer. We end up hopping from bar to bar to beach for a midnight swim. My favorite part about Sicily is that you can swim at any moment. Before we know it the sun is rising and we got some food; a panini meets a hotdog specifically, and go to pass out. I wake up the next day feeling really old and nursing an epic hangover. I only got out of bed for dinner that day, which happened to be in a cave at A Putia dell’Ostello.
Since everyone had to work Monday I made plans to travel to Siracusa. Catania has a train that leaves hourly and cost 6 euros. I love a good public transportation system. After a well rested night, I head over to Siracusa to explore.
As I get off of the train, I google how to walk to the Greek Theatre, s/o again to T-Mobile for killing the data game internationally. It is a 15 minute walk which turns out to be all up hill. It says its only 86 but it feels like 106. Finally I arrive and then remember that all of this is outside but onward I go. For 10 euros, with your student id (thanks JacCard), you can access the grounds and explore. I should have sprung for the audio guide because there are not many plaques to read about what you are looking at.
After a couple hours the heat became unbearable so I decided to head downtown where I could grab a boat ride to see the island. The city is extremely walkable and enjoyable especially from the shady side of the street. The boat tours leave right from the bridge to enter into the city so it is easy to talk to a couple, see where they go and get some prices. The one I choose was 15 euros, 2 hours and went all around the island and into a couple caves. He tells me one leaves in 5 minutes and hurries me to the boat. I board and listen to the families excitedly speak to each other in Italian. Considering the heat and walking around sounds like hell the boat is certainly the way to go.
We are given the option to swim, only one dad, one boyfriend and yours truly decide to go. Who could say no to this water??
I am much happier and much cooler post this boat ride but still decide to find a public beach to spend the rest of the afternoon instead of exploring more of the town. I watch kids snorkel and realize how glad I am I made this decision to quit my job and travel the world. Only half way through the trip and I have already seen and done so much. Truly a happy Monday for me.