When my uncle asked me to join an intimate boat trip with him and my cousin, I accepted the offer on the fly.
It was July 2020, and I had just returned from South America.
I had been travelling for a year, and I had a deep desire to spend time with my family. Even better if aboard a boat off the coast of Sicily.
My flight left Bologna’s airport on a Friday evening, perfectly on time. I was getting excited, happy to meet my uncle and my cousin after a long time.
We always had a good relationship, and in general, all our family is well united. Half of them work together in the pharmaceutical family business. My uncle (my mother’s brother) has always been an entrepreneurial-minded man, but perhaps what he liked most was enjoying the passions fueled by hard work.
Sailing and skiing were his two great loves.
And all of us, cousins and children, were attracted to it like magnets.
Flying over “The Boot” on the plane, my mind flew into the memory of the last family boat adventure with my uncle.
I was a kid and I remember that vacation in Croatia between fear and fun. Yes, because a disaster almost hit when the boat ran aground on a shoal that prompted it to bend to one side at 35 degrees.
We were then saved by a passing boat, which pushed us out of the shallows with a rope hoisted on the tree.
Well, getting out unscathed and without damage to the vehicle can be defined as an adventure.
Still absorbed in my thoughts, I feel the wheels of the plane touching the ground. I had already reached my destination. Accustomed to much longer fights, it seemed like a very fast journey.
Once in Trapani, I waited a couple of hours for the arrival of my uncle and cousin. After the hugs and greetings, we hurried to meet our taxi driver, who would accompany us to the Marina di Marsala where the boat was moored.
An hour later we were already having dinner on the Marsala seafront. A spaghetti cuttlefish ink with white wine and then soon to sleep on the boat.
In the morning at dawn, around 5, the captain wakes up, and then the check on the boat begins.
After a couple of hours, everything is ok. We decide to set sail. Direction San Vito Lo Capo.
The breeze was light, the sea calm, and the boat was travelling under full sail.
What a great feeling!
The thrill of sailing is priceless.
Silence, quietness and freedom. I couldn’t wish for anything better.
After a lunch break in the middle of the sea and a couple of dives off the coast, we arrive in the late afternoon at the marina of San Vito Lo Capo.
Here we moor and go down for dinner.
A fantastic village; Entirely developed on the coast. Colourful, noisy and deeply crowded; As is typical in southern Italy.
Here too, we have delighted our palate with the delicacies of the sea. Between one memory and another, the evening flew by.
The following morning I wake up with the sound of Mocha on the fire. I see from the porthole of the boat, the Captain is already awake and sipping his coffee.
We talked a little about this and that.
We didn’t usually eat much in the morning. Just some fruits and go until lunch.
Once my cousin woke up, we were already sailing.
Next stop Scopello.
Here we would have fully enjoyed the sea. We would have slept “In Rada”. Italian term used when mooring in the open sea.
Well, let me tell you… that night I felt soothed like a baby in the crib.
What a great feeling to sleep on a boat in the open sea … I have been missing it for a long time.
From Scopello, we departed in the morning towards Mondello (beach before Palermo city). It was a day with great wind 7-8 knots, sailing felt wonderful.
We opened the “Fiocco” and went fast with the double sail.
I could stroke the water with one hand as I watched the wind blow up the sails. Simply extraordinary!
Once in Mondello, we stopped for the night moored in the open sea. Less peaceful night. The sea was rougher this time. And, as if that wasn’t enough, you could hear loud music from the so-called “Party Boat” of Mondello. 😜
The following day we freed the dinghy and went to the beach.
Mondello is known for being the beach of the “Palermitani” (people from Palermo).
A long, noisy and heavily crowded beach.
Not really our favourite genre. but, that’s where the Trattoria Da Pietro restaurant was, my uncle’s fixed destination when passing through these parts.
What fantastic dishes. I understand why Sicily is one of the best places in the world in terms of food.
Look here 😋 I know you can taste its flavour just by looking at it. 😅
After Mondello we headed towards the Marina of Palermo. I had already visited the city in the past, but doing it coming from the sea is certainly something special.
The evening in Palermo was particularly fun. The city has a lot to offer and just walking through its historic streets leaves you with a carefree feeling.
The holiday was drawing to a close, but the last stage was still missing: Cefalù, one of the most interesting, in my opinion.
A coastal town, perched on the sea, famous for its Norman cathedral.
The sunset here was breathtaking.
After a night walking barefoot on the sand, a bit of melancholy came over me. I knew that the next day I would “abandon ship”; in fact, while the others would have waited for the remaining part of the family and then continued towards the Egadi Islands. I would have gone down to the Palermo airport. Yes, because even if I had been invited, unfortunately or fortunately I had already committed to fly to Sardinia to a dear friend of mine.
But that’s another story!