Elena Ferrante's Naples
The reason for spending the past five nights in Naples is my enthusiasm for the series of Neapolitan novels by Elena Ferrante: My brilliant friend, The story of a new name, Those who leave and those who stay, Story of a lost child.
While I have been here I have reread the first book and now that I 'know' the city, I plan to reread the other three. It's been great this week to understand better the named locations in the first book, and to project those that are unnamed onto parts of the city that we have encountered on our long walks through its streets. Friday was a particularly good day for this when we wandered through the back streets from Capadimonte to the Cimitero delle Fontanelle. That afternoon we could even see into some of the ground floor flats as people were leaning out their windows or had their main doors open to chat with their neighbours.
On the way back to the airport this morning I snatched from the bus window this shot of a typical Naples housing block, complete with crumbling architecture and washing hanging out to dry. In my imagination the main characters in the Ferrante novels live in this kind of housing.
Our journey home was straightforward. Edinburgh looks so neat and tidy after Naples! The only annoyance today came when we opened the front door and found an envelope on the mat that contains (another) summons for jury service for Mr hazelh, even though he has served within the last five years. The date for which he has been called falls during our main summer holiday. Mr hazelh has devoted much of this evening putting together the necessary documentation to request an excusal. I do hope that this is successful because he was very traumatised by the attempted murder trial that he attended last time, and it would be an awful lot of work (and expensive) to unpick our summer holiday plans.
Exercise today: walking (11,616 steps).