Travel by the Book: Steinbeck’s Positano

Amalfi coastI’m typing this on a leather-inlaid writing desk while listening to the Tyrrhenean sea slap against the craggy rocks beneath my open window.

It’s one of those pinch-me moments.

I feel as if I really should be pecking out the final chapters of my Great American Novel on a Royal typewriter, but since all I’ve got is this blog entry, let’s go with that.

I am, if you haven’t already guessed, on the Amalfi coast of Italy, which is a very cool place to be _ fantastic scenery, nice people and some very tasty food.

The Amalfi coast is famous for making limoncello, lemon-infused liqueur, and hand-made paper. I’ll let you figure out which industry has brought me here.

My hotel, is the Best Western Hotel Marmorata, or as our group has already dubbed it, the Bestest Western. It’s set in an old paper mill and is simply awesome, from the nautical-themed decor _ Hello portholes! _ to the aforementioned cliff top setting.

I can’t quite decide if I want to go all Hemingway _ and I sat and listened to the crash of the sea waves, and it was good _ or emulate F. Scott Fitzgerald and liberate the minibar. Or maybe I should just listen to Steinbeck, who really nailed the ambience of Amalfi in an essay he wrote about the nearby village of Positano,

It is, he wrote, “a dream place that isn’t quite real when you are there and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone.”