5.20.09 Driving Napoli to the Bari Ferry - Camping Onboard (nighttime)
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Driving Napoli to the Bari Ferry - Camping Onboard (nighttime)
Whoâ€™d think weâ€™d require a police escort to get to the highway entrance?! Especially since we walked by it no fewer than eight times! (Head sadly shaking)
With reliance on the GPS, we got turned around trying to get on the new highway ramps and ended up on a tiny road, monitored by two policemen, and which led to a 3.
So one policeman stopped traffic to direct our turnaround, then emphasized: â€śThis *woman* will show you!â€ť- and pointed to a clearly masculine motorcycle cop, as Jazy choked back her laughter.
Motorcycle cop professionally flashed his official badge for us, although we would have followed Kermit Frog by then. He zipped through several free-for-all intersections and down city roads, but patiently waited for us to squirm through and catch up to him.
Then he bid us Ciao at the highway entrance- located just 15â€™ from our Spartacus Campground entrance! Thatâ€™s right- parallel to our train station road is the new A3 highway entrance ramp! Agh! We should have registered that, having walked by it both ways the train station every day.
Iâ€™d been worried weâ€™d get a ticket because we do not have a hazard panel on Sugar! Itâ€™s a big white square with red diagonal reflective stripes on it, so no one hits the bikes on the back. Every other camper with bikes in
We drove again on
The toll road then cost 15.70E all the way across
We checked in- no line at all at 3:30 pm for our 8 pm Superfast Ferry. Superfast is the name of the ferry line, not relative speed. Ticketing lady said that at 6:30 pm and not before, we were to drive into the ferry loading area.
So we called Ned (required a credit card and 15 minutes work to make a connection), cooked a pasta dinner, and met some fellow travelers who spoke English. Kendall and Kevin are from
One Security Guy came up to Sugar while we were parked waiting to load- we thought he wanted a tip. Instead he wanted to exchange a small Italian coin for an Irish one for his collection- heâ€™d seen Sugarâ€™s license plate. Lia dug out an Irish coin to trad with him, although he gave her more, probably because he was embarrassed by our confusion. It was a nice interaction though.
At 6pm the Security guys (never did anyone check ID or passports) said, â€śSure, come on!â€ť or so- English is not so prevalent here. So we pulled in and sat out of the way as directed. â€śCamping on Boardâ€ť is on an upper deck for air circulation and huge trucks were still loading on lower levels.
After weâ€™d waited about 20 minutes, a truck pulled behind us and blew his horn repeatedly, waving his arms like we should get out of his way.
Finally we pulled up aboard into a little row on the Camping deck: thereâ€™s Sugar, some nice guys from
I bought 120 minutes of internet (3E) from the bartender, and thought Iâ€™d ordered a glass of white wine.
Our new Australian friends joined us in the bar just as my computer battery died, so I bid Ned farewell on the IMâ€™ing. We toasted anniversaries and great love and then enjoyed a sail away sunset on deck with our new friends, including a couple from
This ship is Greek - weâ€™re learning Greek words, although not nearly fast enough.
Why would someone elseâ€™s generosity make me feel bad? Maybe because while heâ€™s being so nice, Iâ€™m worrying about inviting a stranger into the camper and so we stand outside to talk. Thatâ€™s prudent, but sometimes I seem to lack the generosity that flows in othersâ€™ spirits.
Lia wrote a simple thank-you note on the back of a
This SuperFast ferry is quite nice and refined inside. It is far less crowded than our
We have electricity on board- the crew immediately plugged Sugar in, using their cords, as soon as we came aboard. That runs the fridge as the propane is cut off (but again, as in
There are also clean bathrooms and showers for each of the sexes just around the corner. We have special paper keys for the doorway in the cafeteria, so that only campers-on-board can access this special deck. It is very nice to have everything we need.
We secured Sugarâ€™s wheels for safety a few of the borrowed great rubber chocks that they have laying around to. There is enough of a rocking motion for peaceful slumber, but not the jerking motion from the Chunnel shuttle crossing. Even the kids agree that the convenience of staying in Sugar is really awesome!
Twenty years ago, I was blessed to marry the most handsome, kind, loving person in the entire world. Happy Anniversary, Sweetie! I love you! (p.s. I guess Will was wrong. J)
And just because I am just so darned proud of him, I'm going to share this recent video of him:
Sorry Girls, he's taken!
We are leaving today our base at Spartacus Campground in Pompei (18E/night for 4 of us) and headed toward
Our 8pm ferry to
We should arrive in Patras at 12:30 pm, but think our clocks get moved ahead 2 hours, maybe one- need to check. I think it is about an hour and a half then to our