I am not a spontaneous traveler. There, I admitted it. The months of day dreaming, web crawling, giddy early morning and late night conversations with my husband and hours thumbing through travel guides are really a huge part of what I love about the actual trip. No matter what dreary events I have to crawl through each day, I have THE TRIP to keep a small smile on my knowing lips. Better days are on their way. I know, I have airline tickets and room reservations! But sometimes my muse can turn into an obsession. And such is the case with the ever seductive Sorrento Webcam.
I came across the webcam one morning weekend morning while busily avoiding housework. The webcam shows a small cross street in Sorrento, Italy on the Amalfi Coast. We were planning to add Southern Italy to our trip in September. The camera hones in on three potted plants that stand in front of a tobacco shop. Not so exciting, until you start to see the shop owner on the right starting to put out knick-knacks to buy. People stroll by in groups or alone. Arguments seemed to pop up here and there about which direction to go. I wonder what is on either side of the street. What are the people buying in the vending machine by the tobacco shop late at night (as it turns out, condoms or cigarettes). And then, once every blue moon, someone will stop at the drain cover in front of the tobacco shop, linger, point at the webcam and wave. The meeting of the Sorrento Webcam Obsession Support Group has started, and just as quickly, adjourned. I am so hooked.
Rather than keeping my obsession secretly to myself I now had to involve others. I was going to be in front of the webcam in a few weeks, and I needed a picture to capture the moment. I sent notices to friends and family letting them know the exact time we would be there and made sure they were schooled in capturing screen shots. After a few practice sessions with my mother (did I mention I was obsessed) I felt our few seconds of Sorrento webcam fame were secure.
I didn’t count on one thing. We planned to take the ferry to the town on Amalfi on a specific day and take the shot in the evening when we returned. We hiked down to the ferry landing per schedule, to learn that the winter schedule had just taken effect that day, and the ferry wouldn’t be running again for several hours. Damn. We headed back to the hotel, sent out an email to friends/family with a switch to the next night, and headed out for a different day trip that wouldn’t allow us to be back in time for the originally planned webcam event.
The next day we went early, found the webcam, shopped at the stores in the area that we had watched for so many months, all the while aware of the webcam lurking down the street. Kind of a reality TV vacation moment. We sat at a bar off site next to a ceramic shop and waited for the appointed time. As we watched other streaming by none seemed aware that the webcam was there. And then it started to rain. And we didn’t have an umbrella. None the less after months of dreaming and planning we presented ourselves to the webcam, pretended to buy things from the tobacco shop and enthusiastically waved from atop the drain cover.
When we got home we learned that nobody had received our email alerting them of the new webcam meeting day or time. Except Mom. Here is our picture.
I admit that since returning from Italy I have been cured of my obsession. I haven’t logged into the Sorrento site once until I sat down to write my thoughts. But do you have any idea how many cooking schools there are in Thailand? Happy Travels.