Everyone was up early to join the milling hoards catching the ferry to Capri. The windows on a return ticket are much too short, so we bought singles and went boldly. Scamp also needed a ticket for the princely sum of €2. It was a large ferry and a noisy crossing. We sat in the middle to the rear, as the windows were opaque with salt. On arrival we came off at the main taxi rank amid the pandemonium of milling tourists and threaded our way along the waterfront to the quieter side by the marina. The marina was extraordinarily quiet. There were hardly any boats in there and the only sign of the Rolex Cup was a plaque in the posh restaurants. We settled in the shade outside the less posh snack bar and had breakfast and coffee without the elevated waterfront price tag.
Mindful of the time it would take up, we decided to miss the Blue Grotto, so after breakfast we picked up a taxi for the thrill ride up to Anna Capri. All seven of us fitted in one car, two in the back, three on the flip up seats in the middle and Johnsey and Scamp in the front next to the driver. The drive is an event in itself, especially as traffic lights interrupt the natural call and response rhythm of the cars and busses negotiating the narrow road. It seems as though you have climbed forever, but the square in Anna Capri is by no means close to the summit. John and Lara elected to stay with Scamp, having already experienced the chair lift to the top of Mount Solar. “Once was quite enough, we’ll take him a walk and then find a bar.” Once was not enough for me, I loved the chairlift. It was exactly as I remembered. Sitting onto a moving chair was unsettling, but then it soared beyond the noise and I gently floated up the hill, watching the family strung out in front of me and the gardens passing below. Beyond the villas the hillside was a tapestry of wildflowers, busy with insects. Another discomforting moment stepping off at the engine house and then up the steps to the terrace with views of both sides of the island and the iconic Figliano rocks. After indulging in a burst of photography we sat in the bar area and had a drink, during which cloud moved to obscure the south side of the island, bringing with it a noticeable cooling.
Fortunately this was short-lived and we had spectacular views of the Bay on our journey back down. There was an interesting moment when all the chairs came to a halt and we dangled silently for a while before the machinery trundled back to life. After a while I noticed a chair laden with a large plastic crate rather than a person on the upward track and surmise this was being loaded during our unscheduled halt.
Lara and John were waiting in the open area at the foot of the chairlift. Scamp was only moderately interested in greeting us, as he was busy retrieving a pebble from anyone willing to throw it to him. Next on our agenda was Axel Munche’s house> I was ready to take a turn with Scamp, but the man on the door asked if he was a normal dog or a lion dog and then let him through. I think he was referring to the sphinx on the parapets. So we all wandered through the interesting rooms out to the breathtaking pergola and enchanting gardens. We have been able to do far more things all together with a dog here in Italy than we could have in the UK.
After lunch in a very dog friendly garden café in Anna Capri we caught another taxi to the upper town of Capri and looked in at the posh shops. By the time we found the monastery the main gates were closed, so after an expensive drink at a café in the square we set off down the funicular and bought our tickets back to Sorrento. It was four Euros for Scamp to go back.
After leaving Capri as late as possible there was a rush to get ready and hike across to Marina Grande for dinner on the restaurant that goes out above the bay on stilts. We were greeted by complimentary glasses of prosecco and had another lovely meal.
Vesuvius finally made an appearance for a photo call with Emma and Johnsey.