Thursday, November 08, 2007

Catania, Sicily, again

W arrived in the evening, took a cab to our hostel, the same one we stayed in on our previous trip in March this year. The owner recognised us, 'oh, it's you again!'. Yes, for 45E a night for the both of us, it's the bargain of the century. It is not in the best part of town but it is a 5 minute walk to the train station. They were full in the main palazzo, so we walked in the dark, through some weird alleys to a nearby apartment that they owned, had 3 big rooms and a shared bathroom. We stayed 3 nights, the first 2 we had the whole apartment to ourselves. We had to climb 3 flights of stairs. In Europe, be ready for lots of stairs, whether in hotels or in hostels but also in the metro and the trains. Pack light is the best motto.
It is obvious the accomodations are even below the level of Motel 6, leaves a lot to be desired. I've stayed in cheapie places and very expensive places. I'm gung ho for anything, doesn't bother me. The great thing about this place in Catania is it faces the sea, it has a waterfront view, glorious, it's near the train station. They're always full.
The next morning, it was raining, in fact, it rained on and off the whole time we were in Sicily except our last day. We were prepared, it rained too during our March visit. We went out in the rain anyway. The sea was so rough and the waves, some 30 feet high were crashing onto the promenade. It was a beautiful sight.
We found a cafe and had our first arancino(i), walked around Catania while waiting for a bus to take us to Piazza Armerina. It is so good to be back.
The main way to fly to Sicily is through Catania. While there are airports in Palermo and Trapani, most airlines fly in and out of Catania. This time we flew into a brand new building. There is a bus, No. 457 that runs between the airport and the train station. The bus system is right next to the main train station. Catania is very easy to handle, it might not look pretty as other cities in Northern Italy but we felt real comfortable in Catania.

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