The Making of a Syracuse Super Sarnie
Last time we were in Syracuse we never got round to trying one of the mega sarnies from the Caseificio Borderi deli at the far end of the daily market. The time had come to make amends so we joined Tree from Tinkerbell amongst the loose collection of people gathered round the long table outside the small shop, some waiting for sandwiches, some for the deli goods inside. Time passed quickly watching the entertaining sarnie maestro at work, even though our passage to the front of the queue was slow; there is little pre-preparation, he stops for regular chats and there may be some queue jumpers, but then this is Italy! Every sandwich is unique and built up in stages – ours began with some sun dried tomatoes nestled in a well in the bread, followed by fresh salad leaves, tomatoes and radish chopped in a blur. A drizzle of olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon, before grated parmesan, sliced mozzarella and other cheeses were laid in place. Then he went off into the deli to slice ham and even more cheese which was rolled into a neat tube before being delicately laid on top. Some shakes of dried oregano, a splash of oil and a dash of lemon to finish off before the bread lid went on and the masterpiece was chopped in half and wrapped in paper. And all for only €5 per sandwich!
It did take nearly an hour before we got our sarnie but our hunger was tempered by the generous samples of ham and cheese handed out as we waited. It was worth the wait for the delicious sandwich with enough cheese to keep me in cheese dreams for a month and so filling we didn’t need another meal that day. We sat out by the sea to eat and kept the pigeons well fed with the bits that fell out; I also managed to get lots of soft cheese on my nose and bits and bobs of sarnie all over me.
Wandering Around Ortigia
Today (Sunday) the duomo in Ortigia was free for entry so I took the chance for another wander around to see the ancient Greek columns of the temple of Minerva enclosed by the later building of the Christian faith. Santa Lucia was not in her resting place, I later found her in front of the Caravaggio painting in the church of Santa Lucia alla Badia having a mass performed in her honour. Every May the town pays tribute to their patron saint Santa Lucia with processions. masses and ceremonies. There were a lot of tour groups standing around in the duomo oblivious to anyone who might want to get past and a woman who seemed to be on a time critical mission to photograph everything without really looking who walked into me not once but twice and both times I was standing still. I don’t think many people noticed the balloon lost inside the duomo and resting up by the ceiling.
Away from the crowds I enjoyed just wandering around the windy streets of Ortigia, admiring the old buildings or a balcony bursting with colourful flowers. I did this several times when we were here in September but still managed to make up a different route as there are so many criss-crossing streets.
Porto Palo to Syracuse
Date: Friday 8th May
Location: Syracuse, Sicily
Position: 37 03.6’N 15 17.02’E
Distance travelled: 29nm (0nm sailed)
Weather: Dry, sunny and warm. Light easterly winds going south east at end of afternoon
Not the most interesting trip but better we think than if we’d left the day before as we heard there was a fair swell rolling in from the north. Two boats anchored in Porto Palo had left Thursday to head to Syracuse (we know because we followed them on Vessel Stalker) and we had the ooh they’re leaving what shall we do dilemma but decided we would stay put as it was still a bit over windy. The swell had died down by Friday but there wasn’t enough wind for us to sail so it was a leisurely motor all the way with nearly a knot of tide against us for the last few hours. I took the opportunity to pod my big bag of broad (fava) beans and made a bit more progress on my third crocheted storage bag. Crocheting (for simple projects) at sea is much easier than knitting as I can stop suddenly to deal with any sailing needs without forgetting where I’ve got to and dropped stitches aren’t really a problem. It was a shame to motor but at least we know the engine is healthy after it’s winter layup.
Nothing much has changed in the anchorage since last September and there was plenty of space. The customs boat has circled the anchorage a few times, hanging off our side yesterday for a few minutes. I gave them a wave, they waved back and moved off. Perhaps they were lonely.
Ashore, the new quayside along the Ortigia waterfront is still under construction and where we parked the dinghy on the left hand side after passing under the first bridge had now been taken over by trip boats but we were kindly directed over to the far corner by one of the trip guys.
Colin’s Delightful Dinghy Davits
During the winter Colin redesigned our dinghy davits to extend them a little further away from the boat because the Hydrovane and the legs of the boarding ladder got in the way when we hoisted the dinghy out. It was always a time consuming battle involving trying to push the dinghy out at the same time as pulling it up. Pepe the Stainless at MdR took the davits away to weld the extensions in place and Colin added some wire strops from the ends of the davits up to the arch to add extra support. Now the dinghy is a doddle to lift out rather than being a battle as it had been; we can even hoist it up with the outboard still on.
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