Warning: The contents of this blog could inspire feelings of jealousy and even anger. Proceed with caution.

Ruth: I love islands. Even though I grew up far away from the ocean, as an adult I have become an island woman, living on a large island and spending lots of time in the summer on a smaller one. Gord and I were excited to board the ferry at Milazzo and head out to the Aeolian islands. We expected the islands to be nice but have been surprised by their jaw dropping beauty. 

The Aeolian islands are all of volcanic origin. Some, like Stromboli, are still very active.  In spite  of their small size they all rise out of the ocean to elevations of 2,000 to 3,000 feet. We are spending our first nights on Salina. The greenest of the islands, it is famous for its capers and sweet Malvasia wine. 

Yesterday we climbed up to the top of the larger of the two volcanic cones that make up Salina.  The cone is covered with pine, chestnut and eucalyptus trees, and the view from the top was amazing. Today we cycled to the town of Polara on the other side of the island. It was perhaps the most stunning ride I have ever done. Polara is where the film Il Postino was filmed about twenty years ago.  

Gordon: We had a perfect moment on the return ride.  While we followed the tranquil road as it snaked along the cliffs above the sea, a travelling vegetable sales truck came up behind us.  Apparently for our benefit, he put on a recording of “House of the Rising Sun” at full volume on a PA system as he approached.  The opening chords reverberating in our chest, followed by the balance of the song carried on the wind as the truck outdistanced us, were a magical experience.  

After amazing swims on both sides of the island we have decided to take the names Francesca and Giovanni, tear up our onward plane ticket, and stay here forever.

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