A day in the life of Travel Loafers can be unpredictable. And those are often the best travel days. We (there are two of us Loafers who run our travel agency) generally plan our trips in broad strokes. Because the devil is in the detail, isn’t it? Although there’s nothing wrong with all-inclusive resorts and organized tours and the like, it’s not necessarily what gives us wanderlust. Traveling “a la carte,” as opposed to taking the “daily special,” is often what excites us as travelers.
Occasionally, things go sideways.
What you might read while dreaming up your next trip may no longer be relevant by the time you get there. That fantastic neighborhood pub you read about in a blog may have gone under. Or the charismatic bartender might have passed away. Or the experience is simply a bit of a let-down—just like seeing a movie everyone is talking about: it may not live up to your expectations.
“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans,” is a quote the internet attributes to John Lennon. Whether he said it or not, there’s a lot of truth to that. Although we do make travel plans, they’re fluid travel plans. Any traveler eventually has to deal with the unexpected, the fly in the ointment so to speak. And that’s part of the beauty of traveling—that’s when traveling becomes an adventure!
We got off the early morning train in Catania, Sicily, with the idea of taking a ferry to Malta. We had read in one of those famous and reputable travel guides we had with us that there were ferries from here to Malta. Adding to the Sicilian experience was the language. Our Italian is rough at best, and few here speak English—culture shock.
Travelloafing in Sicily
From the train station, already in the scorching Mediterranean heat with our backpacks, we walked to the Metropolitana-Stazione Porto, one or two kilometers away. As far as we could understand by asking around the port, there are no ferries to Malta from here, or maybe not at this time of year. Or maybe not ever. But certainly not today. However, we did learn that the ferry to Malta leaves from Pozzallo—hopefully today.
Not the ferry to Malta
Word got out that we were looking to get to Malta. Within a few moments, we were swamped by local men offering to drive us to Pozzallo, 120 kms due south on Sicily’s southern coast. The asking price was 140 euros in a car with Aria Condizionata! I have to say, air conditioning at this point was very appealing.
Still not the ferry to Malta
We kept walking, backtracking to where we had come from. We had spotted a bus depot across from the train station earlier, which we thought we should check out before committing to one of these fine driving gentlemen. As we walked away, prices around us dropped to 90 euros.
Tickets for a bus to Pozzallo were 10 euros each. There’s aria condizionata on the autobus, yes? Sold! It turned out to be a scenic ride with locals, following the eastern coast of Sicily—a milk run stopping in various seaside settlements along the way. We weren’t in much of a rush, and it was midday. The turquoise Mediterranean sea lapped on the beaches to our left, and the hills of the Sicilian countryside rolled along outside the window to our right.
You can just see the bus terminal back there
Although we didn’t know it yet, an amazing afternoon with new friends awaited us in Pozzallo. To think we had never even heard of Pozzallo until a little while ago.
Also, I’m happy to report there’s indeed a ferry to Malta from Pozzallo.
It’s not a mirage; it’s the ferry to Malta!
Book your trip now at our Travel Loafers website – it’s easy! Or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions. We’d be more than happy to assist you with your travel plans. We do love traveling.
A Day in a Life of a Travel Blogger: Sometimes the Plan Doesn’t Quite Work Out https://t.co/9OXFyD4GbH
— Uncharted101.com (@Uncharted1o1) January 8, 2017