Fishing Trip Report
After a long dry spell, and much public moaning about it, Ellis and I finally managed to take a proper holiday- and what a holiday it was! We traveled via Rome to a lovely little island called Ponza to take advantage of the hospitality of our great friend Mr. Stefano Occhipinti, a native of Rome who has spent many childhood summers there. He rented a very nice hillside villa where we were joined by a group of friends from Hong Kong for some swimming, eating, drinking and not a whole lot else.
Ellis and I en route to Ponza on the boat of Mr. and Mrs. Occhipinti
Stefano’s daughter Tea, doing something really gross and messy
Lobster and spaghetti at the best restaurant on Ponza, served by Fabrizio, Stefano’s twin brother
The marvelous decoration at the Pirate Restaurant
Not all guests are so lucky to have a private chauffeur; the ferry ride over from Anzio is still very picturesque though.
Julie joins us mid-week.
Stefano thinks it over.
Not a lot to do during the day except hire a little boat and explore all the grottoes and swim in the Mediterranean. It’s a hard job, but someone’s got to do it!
Since I don’t have a waterproof camera I’m going to lean on the promotional literature. They’re much prettier in person.
In addition to the grottoes, the sea is studded with magnificent rock formations.
The seascape includes many beautiful old lighthouses. This is my favorite. It could be from a fairy tale.
And of course the water is exceptionally clear. I don’t think I’ll ever swim in the sea in Hong Kong again.
Tea and Stefano.
Tea takes the wheel. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
The day in Ponza always ends much as it did in the 1920s, when this photo was taken, at the Caffe Tripoli for sundowners.
At the bar.
Still at the bar.
On the nights we didn’t dine on olives and spritzes at the bar, we made use of the kitchen and the fish mongers.
It turns out Stefano is a fabulous cook. Here is a whole fish roasted with potatoes.
He was a big fellow! We dined the next night on fish meatballs made from his head and his gigantic cheeks.
Julie looking very glamorous over coffee before striking off for the boat trip.
Ellis and Tea looking also very chic.
The main town of Ponza is also very pretty. It is not so fancy as Capri or the towns on the Amalfi Coast, but definitely has its charms.
It was a truly spectacular holiday. We got to spend lots of time getting to know even better the delightful and brilliant Tea, not to mention one another, amongst the most splendid scenery on earth. We ate lots of delicious food, very simply prepared and sometimes not even prepared (hello fresh mozzarella eaten like an apple!), drank buckets of Prosecco, got a little bit of a tan but never a sunburn and even managed to get some exercise swimming in the sea everyday. I can’t imagine a nicer way to live.