Thursday, February 11, 2010

The motherland

Not satisfied being limited by train travel, a car rental was in order to get ourselves around the island of Sicily.  A night or two in Palermo on the north coast gave us a chance to fill our bellies before heading south through the mountains to the south coast.  Yeah sure, the Sicilian cities of Palermo and Sciacca are nice but the real beauty of the land lines in the rolling hills covered in olive, orange, and lemon trees as well as the obligatory vineyards.  The small villages perched atop magnificent granite peaks overlooking the valley and farmlands you pass through while cutting through the center of this beautiful island are really the heart of Sicily.  Many of them well known such as Corleone and Caltabellotta as birthplace and home to infamous mafioso families.  You might even be able to gauge the likelihood of crooked noses in each village by the number of bullet holes and shotgun spray blasts in the signs 'welcoming' you to each village... some of them hardly legible from all of the scars.  Despite, or possibly because of, our collision with a white-out blizzard crossing the mountains and a forced crossing of a roadway washed out by a major landslide I recommend a road trip as the necessary way to travel Sicily to get the most accurate flavor of this land... ahhhh adventure...

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