Wednesday, May 11, 2011
First She Whacked Me with a Rolling Pin, Then She Stole My Heart
If Rome is like a passionate kiss, Naples is like a kick in the shin.
Mr. Wonderful and I arrived Monday morning after a nice train ride and a grungy metro hop. I knew immediately once we got to the underground platform we were not in Rome anymore. Designer heels had given way to beat-up kicks. Fine tailored suits were replaced by tattered leather jackets and greasy hair. I'm pretty sure one man on the subway had a Tuberculosis cough.
When we emerged at street level, we were immediately assaulted by honking horns, pieces of trash blowing down the sidewalk, the smell of gasoline fumes and cigarette smoke. I thought we might have accidentally gotten off at Hell instead of Stazione Cavour.
For every dimple of charm Rome flashes with a flirt, Naples reveals a scab and a scar. But then she beckons you closer, lifts her skirt, and offers you the most delicious slice of pizza you've ever imagined. And suddenly, you're in love.
After quickly recharging at our oasis of a hotel, we headed back out to the chaotic streets to find a pizzeria Mr. W had read about online. This was when I felt myself start to fall. Like when you find yourself suddenly attracted to the scraggy biker in your chemistry class, despite the fact that he hasn't showered in 3 days.
There's something endlessly endearing about the way Neapolitans desecrate their city with graffiti but then drape it in pride with Italian flags. And then there are the beautiful Italians eating pizza...
I have never in the States seen a beautiful woman polish off an entire pizza in one sitting. In Naples, it's just another lunchtime. Try as I did, I couldn't finish the whole thing. Next time, next time.
Thank goodness I have an excuse now to return to this new city I adore.