We have had two very good nights in Agrigento. The water system behaved itself for us this morning so we can travel smelling clean and fresh. With the car packed we ask Jane to help navigate us to Corleone, about half way to our destination. On the recommendation of previous Intrepid Travellers we have decided to go over the mountains instead of through them. As a starter soon after leaving the apartment we are directed up a very steep narrow one way cobbled street. Just as well we have a ton of power under the bonnet. There is no way of retracing our steps if all goes wrong. Perhaps Jane knows what we are in for and is getting us prepared.
Once out of the city we are soon blowing the cobwebs and dust from the car with a surge of power on the autostrada that could take us to Palermo. At one point we need to stop at some road works controlled by traffic lights. How do beggars know about these locations miles from anywhere? The doors stay locked, windows stay shut and we look at some obscure building in the distance. After a few kilometers we turn off
onto a lesser strata provinciale. As a consequence the surface deteriorates quite considerably. We are soon climbing higher passing through a hillside town and then higher still. What incredible views. A farmer cutting hay gives us a friendly wave. Perhaps we are the only people he has seen in a week.
We arrive in Corleone at lunchtime. What a fascinating name for a town. We think back to the 1970’s movies of The Godfather and Marlon Brando playing Don Corleone. Mafia country springs to mind, but we are soon put at ease when we visit a pasticceria for some lunch time delights. We ask for “due sfogliatella”. The very nice shop assistant gives us a little Italian language lesson and insist we repeat after her “due sfogliatelle”. We all laugh and we get lots of “prego” from fellow shoppers. Not a Mafia man in sight. Someone even asks if we have enough room to get out of our parking space, something we would have thought quite foreign for the locals. Perhaps he was a tourist like us.
From Corleone we give Jane instructions to take us to Cinisi, a town that will be home for the next three
nights. The road starts off narrower and more rugged than before. The surface of the road gives the impression it will soon disappear down the hill at any time. In some places it has. Where it still exists the cracks have been sealed over in the hope it will be held together for another season. We meet a large stock truck coming towards us at a very rough patch. We stop and watch its progress as it twists and turns through the large crater sized potholes. It is then our turn. The poor car. We look on the bright side. The scenery is wonderful. We wonder what life must be like so far from civilisation.
Soon we are looking down on the sea. Our destination is close to Palermo. We have about an hour to spare before we check in so we decide to explore the town centre. It is closed up on this Monday afternoon. After another scrumptious gelato we walk along the main street. Stopping outside one building we notice some sort of reference to the Mafia. Embedded in the footpath are tiles leading down the street, across the road and further on down the other side.
We try to find out from a couple, who are also interested, what it all means. We have a language issue. We investigate further and find more references to the Mafia. When we finally get a chance we Google the name, Peppino Impastato. What we read is quite shocking. Our accommodation is in via Peppino Impastato.
On arrival at our apartment we receive a wonderful welcome. The accommodation is fabulous. Our only tricky moment is parking the car in a space suited to a Fiat Bambino. The space is for two cars, we will endeavor to be first in each night. Tonight we relax.
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