Here we are in Capri, with a “new” series of luggage labels to remind us of another wonderful stop along our journey.
Writer Alberto Savinio (1891-1952) once came to the island in the Gulf of Naples with his “trusty suitcase, dotted with the many hotel labels that symbolically illustrate a vagabond, restless life.”
Immediately, he looked out from a “typical Capri terrace”, the “Pompeian terrace” featured in “every illustrated postcard and every chromolithography decorating the rooms […], that fine, aerial, blooming terrace that the people who live on these beaches have rebuilt for centuries, in memory of the dead Pompeii.”
“Beneath me,” Savinio continues, “bunches heavy with golden lemons, green vineyards cut down the middle by the shiny tracks of the funicular, descending in steps to the marina. This is the fertile, flourishing part of the island. Capri used to be nothing but a single, huge rock of granite. Then the sea and sky’s seductions undermined it like the sweetest poison, and the rock started softening up, little by little, and giving in. That is how we came to climb this very fecund valley, dominated by the Solaro’s cliffs on one side and Monte Tiberio on the other…”
“But was that single moment in which the rock let go enough to justify Capri’s relaxed mood, famous all over the world, as far as Patagonia and Lapland?”, the writer wonders.
His answer is “No, Capri is a woman only down here. Everywhere else, and most of all inside the unassailable bronze belt that surrounds it, Capri still has an intact coarse, virile, and warlike character” (translated from A. Savinio, “Capri”, Adelphi, Milan 1988).