It’s probably a little strange for me to write a post about planning, since Mark does most of it, but let me give it a try.
So far, we have little to say about Zagreb – we got in late Thursday after the hottest train ride ever and the heat wave was still blasting on Friday. So we did some minimal tourist stuff, had an amazing lunch, and instead of suffering in the blazing sun we dedicated the day to planning out the rest of our European stay. Short story is that we’re going to be on the beach a lot in the coming weeks.
It’s a little surprising how much time we put into planning things – where we’re going next, where we’re staying, how we’re getting there, and then thinking one or two or three stops down the line. (The other surprise is how much time I spend doing laundry in the bathroom, but that’s another story…) In the past, if we were planning two weeks in Italy or something like that, Mark would spend weeks researching, reading reviews, poring over guide books, building test itineraries. Now we’re sort of making it up as we go along, but we still need to put it all together and pay attention to commitments (Albania with Rezart for the last week in August, a five-day bike tour in Puglia in southeastern Italy the first week of October).
So here’s the plan: from Zagreb we’ll go to Split and then Makarska, both on the Dalmatian coast, for three days each. Then it’s Dubrovnik – a city I’ve dreamt of literally for 40 years – for six days. From there Rezart’s in charge for a week in Albania and maybe a little Montenegro before we take a ferry from Durrës, Albania to Bari, Italy.
We’ve thought from the start of this adventure that we were going to spend September in Italy, but the big decision yesterday was that we were really going to spend September in and around Naples. We’ll hightail it from Bari across Italy direct to Naples for my first return after spending nearly two years there in the mid-1970s and then spend time on each of the three islands in the Bay of Naples – Capri, Ischia, and Procido. Then we’ll head to the Amalfi coast for more beaches, hiking, and eating.
That’s it – that’s what we accomplished yesterday. Deciding to spend four weeks all within shouting distance of Naples. It should be heavenly.