Wednesday 24 August 2005. After we left Amalfi the coach took us up into the hills and we stopped for lunch.
This turned out to be pasta, which I don't really like, but needs must - yeuch! An then on to Ravello.
The village is gorgeous, but we have come here in particular to visit Villa Rufolo, famous for both its gardens and as a venue for open air performances.
I didn't pay much attention to the chap crossing in front of me at the time but can lay people's minds to rest by reporting that he was whistling and not reacting to a bee sting...
This corner was laid out with chairs ready for a performance. Whatever it was, it wasn't to happen during our visit!
The venue hosts performances from opera to Elton John. This is the main stage, erected on scaffolding on the very edge of the cliff face.
Elton John wasn't there at the time we visited though, so I took advantage of an empty stage to stand on it myself and give a short but extremely worthy aria... or something...
The stage actually overhangs the cliff and couldn't be in a more spectacular setting. Wagner wrote part of his Parsifal here.
The gardens were a riot of colour whilst we were there. My Grandad would have loved it. His greenhouse was always a riot of colour and that heady smell of plant growth and compost when I was a kid. Apparently when I was a baby I found the paint brush he had been painting his greenhouse frame with - this being in the days of wooden-framed greenhouses. Apparently soap and water had to be deployed to get the green paint out of my mouth... Somewhat thankfully I don't remember this myself...
The view over the cliffs. This is one of the most common postcard views of Ravello.
This is another. Google for Ravello images and you will see these twin towers again and again.
Villa Rufolo originated in the 13th century as a convent. There is still plenty of evidence of that time of quiet religious contemplation, but try as I might I could find nun of the original inhabitants...
Never-the-less, these quiet remains of a previous way of life gave the place an alternative character and the cool of the vaulted room was welcome after the heat and glare of the sunshine outside.
It was time to leave Villa Ruffolo, so we came out to the pleasant square we saw earlier, where this shop quickly got the attention of the ladies.