It became clear that very soon we would have to consider moving from Salvatore’s campsite, as the summer season was fast approaching.
Dear Salvatore had allowed us to remain with our two hounds as a special favour, although his campsite had an official policy of “no dogs”. He had been so concerned for us and had tried his best to prolong our stay, but before long another family from Rome would be arriving, expecting to park their caravan on our pitch.
Already at weekends several families had been turning up, busily organising themselves for the summer months. They came with their cars packed to the gunnels with crates, plastic tables, chairs, sun loungers, umbrellas, fridges, cooking stoves, plastic cupboards, shelving, fans, TV’s …… even canaries in cages and pet cats. This was an almost “home from home” relocation – Just how much could more could they manage to cram into a small caravan and awning, we wondered?
All the little local campsites, shops and restaurants dotted along the coast road had started springing into life, preparing for the onslaught of summer visitors. Boards were prepared advertising the local cuisine and delicacies such as “zuppa di pesce”, “tiella” and fresh “mozzarella di buffala”. Stalls appeared setting out a colourful array of holiday goods. Over-grown verges were cleared for parking so that in August hundreds of cars could squeeze into every little nook and cranny available.
At one stage we considered purchasing a second-hand mobile-home to accommodate us all on the building site, while the necessary renovation work was being undertaken on the farmhouse.
However in due course we abandoned this notion and decided that the quickest solution was to find a suitable rental property in the Itri vicinity. We had not taken into account that rental prices were significantly inflated during the profitable summer months, thus we were greatly relieved when Giampiero, the estate agent, came up trumps by locating a more reasonably priced property, which could solve our accommodation problem, at least in the short term.
This was merely a small, simple country villa, but to us it felt perfectly luxurious and spacious, compared to our compact little caravan quarters, and best of all it had a bath and lots of hot and cold running water.
Yet we were particularly sad to conclude our stay at the campsite, as we had very much enjoyed our spell there, under Salvatore’s watchful eye. We promised to drive down to visit him and his family regularly.