Day 60 - Ferry

10 February 2022

You sleep better in a tent than you do on a ferry. I am not complaining. It is what it is. The oceans were calm. The motion helps you sleep. The beds are fine. There is a vent in the roof. It pumps air into the cabin. It sounds like an old TV off the air. A wooshing noise. They called it snow. If you are under 35 you have no idea what I am talking about.

The vent is loud. You can’t sleep with it on. You can turn it off. Temporarily. It is on a timer. When it comes back on it wakes you up. Asleep at 1.00 am. Awake at 6.00 am.

“I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I'm awake, you know?” ― Ernest Hemingway

The ferry is huge. There are only a few travelers. Most are truck drivers. I assume in the quiet season the ferry makes a profit from shipping freight trucks, not travelers. I can’t work out why. It is a 20-hour ferry. A 14-hour drive to Rome from Barcelona. Perhaps they are connecting to another ferry.

The day is blue. The water is blue. A stunning blue. We lay in the sunshine at the back of the ferry reading books. There is no internet. I have not posted on the blog for a while. Are the three people who read it worried? The only spoiler is the plume of diesel smoke we trail behind us.

“Il mediterraneo non è solo geografia. Non è solo storia. Ma è più di una semplice appartenenza.” 

“The Mediterranean is not just geography. It is not just history. But it is more than just belonging."- Jean-Claude Izzo

As we pass islands, Sardinia, we get occasional mobile reception. I don’t mind not having internet. I would wonder something, anything, and not have an answer at my fingertips. So I would continue wondering. Try and work it out. It felt good to not know. Not knowing, wondering, is good for the brain.

The sun goes down and it gets cold. Stunning sunset. We head back to the cabin. And the vent. Even awake it is intrusive. We read and watch the sea roll past. I finish Wanderess by Roman Payne. I enjoy his writing style. His poetry is brilliant. The book was set in Spain and Italy. The places he mentions we have visited or will be visiting. I enjoyed the connection.

“She was a free bird one minute: queen of the world and laughing. The next minute she would be in tears like a porcelain angel, about to teeter, fall and break. She never cried because she was afraid that something 'would' happen; she would cry because she feared something that could render the world more beautiful, 'would not' happen.” ― Roman Payne

I start World Travel - An Irreverent Guide by Anthony Bourdain. I didn’t realise it was written posthumously. I like Bourdain. Not so much his television, but his writing. His suicide at 61 still confuses me. As does all mental illness.

“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.” ― Anthony Bourdain

A knock on the door and it is time to leave. We wait an hour for the doors to open after docking. We were the last on so we are almost first off. I watch the semi-trailers disembark. I cannot reverse a trailer. Watching these men navigate trucks in tight space is impressive.

We set foot in Italy and ride into Civitavecchia. No passport check. No visa check. No COVID check. The same as Portugal and Spain.


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