We were both eager to revisit the garden of La Mortella, to see it in a different season. The taxi we took had the same driver who brought us back from the garden last time, though he was driving a less eccentric bus. He obviously had a taste for unusual taxis, for sellotaped above his windscreen were photos of hybrid vehicles, which combined a Vespa scooter bolted to the rear of a Morris Traveller. He gave us his card so we could call him for the return trip.
The early slanting light cast a spell over the already enchanting garden, though it proved beyond our photographic skills to capture this. A summer of tropical growth meant we were enclosed by lush greenery filtering the soft light. There were fewer flowers, but the blooms that were out flooded the garden with perfume and the tropical water lilies and lotus flowers in the pools were at their most spectacular. We happily wandered the paths, so captivated it was a surprise to realise how high we had climbed. The views out showed a calmer sea, with rows of breakwater that had been beneath the surf on our last visit. The autumn light was more flattering to the blue glass pond at the top of the garden, which was augmented by the blue flowers of salvias and a climbing plumbago and so looked less out of place. The garden was busier than in spring, but we were still able to find a quiet bench to sit and take in the views and the scents. On our way back down we stopped for tea in the hanging terrace and then lingered for a light lunch, tomato bruschetta for me, ham and cheese panino for John.
We wandered back through the fountains to catch a taxi home. We had debated whether to walk, but in the event were glad we hadn’t given the lack of pavement on the fast road and the distance actually being quite far. Refreshingly the taxi back was the same price as that going out. We spent the afternoon grocery shopping and stocked up the wine cellar from the specialist.