Molfetta - Italy

Trip Start Oct 30, 2007
Trip End Nov 20, 2009

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Flag of Italy  ,
Wednesday, October 15, 2008

(Note :  All entries from now until Perth in November are way
shorter than they should be, as all out text got stolen, together with
our laptop, all our valuables, and almost our whole campervan, when it
was broken into and trashed in Rome at the end of October.  Have a look
at that entry if you want to have a look at the damage the bastards
did.  The next month or so´s text is written 6 months later, so we may
have forgotten some bits!)

Further down the east coast, the fishing town of Molfetta lies in a picturesque harbour with small, one way cobbled streets (which makes manoevering the campervan through the guts of it to the harbour in rush hour a decent challenge!).  We parked up by some small fishing boats, got the fishing rod and a bottle of wine out (the former is normally an excuse for the latter!) and dropped a line in on the pontoon.  We got chatting to a fishing family also on the pontoon with their boat (with our very very limited Italian, and their non existent English it made for good fun - Brad´s use of Spanish with an Italian accent was surprisingly successful!). 

Mauricio and Grazia had a little old wooden fishing boat which was their only livelihood. With the chronic overfishing of the Adriatic, as we found out fish stocks have been rapidly depleted in recent years. Grazia had half her teeth missing, but was constantly laughing about anything and everything, Mauricio had one tooth (yes, just the one) which was obviously loose and kept wobbling when he spoke (we wondered which of us was going to be the one to catch it!), but they were the nicest people.  

While Mauricio and his son checked out the van, Grazia regaled Karen in her wonderful new spacious apartment (with 2 bathrooms!) and ´kidnapped´ Karen to have a look (about 5 mins out of town) on the back of her moped.  Unable to refuse, Karen disappeared into the distance while the boys chewed the fat (Mauricio tried to tell Brad not to drink so much wine, and that it was bad for me, but he might as well have saved his breath).  Eventually Karen came back from their little flat in the suburbs and they invited us to come to their place in the morning.  Next morning Mauricio showed us the way in his little three wheeled Piaggio once he had taken his catch to market (which ended up being only half a bucket of small fish and squid - for a whole night´s work) and they gave us coffee (and 9am - maybe they thought that´s what we usually did?) and we got another tour of their flat (which didn´t take long - it was a small flat), their DVD collection of 1960s Italian slapstick movies (they even put one on for us........), and told us of their police complaints of their horrible neighbours above for hanging their sheets too low so they couldn´t see out of their balcony (scandalous!). 

The piece de resistance though was Mauricio´s garage, where he not only mended his nets and fixed the boat motor, but also had his friends around for karaoke (Mauricio had the largest speakers in a small space we´d ever seen).  He even rummaged through his tape collection to come up with a half English track.  We had the full ¨Compere at the Boxing¨ intro ..................Eeeeeeeeets Meeeachelllllll Booooltonnnnnnnnnn.  Yes, we sat appreciatedly through an Italian duet with Mauricio and Mr bad perm and mullet himself.  Classic!  Such a laugh - great to get to meet people like them, they were so hospitable. 
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