Day 72 San Leone to Triscina, Sicily

We have unexpectedly found ourselves tonight in Triscina, on the south western coast of Sicily. We had planned to stay in Menfi, but when we arrived at the campsite that we had thought we had booked (and indeed, received email confirmation!!), we were told that they were closed. It was with some relief that we phoned the next campsite on our ASCI app, since if it hadn’t have been closed, I suspect we would have left anyway – it looked truly grim! So we headed on to the next available campsite, which has turned out to be quite a find. But first to today.
As I typed my blog last night, Howard went off for a shower. He returned abruptly ten minutes later, wrapped in a small towel (and nothing else), and covered in foamy lather. ‘Don’t ask’ he said, as he reached for something in the glove compartment. With that, he slammed the van door shut, and retreated back to the wash block. It turned out, that our campsite had timed showers – three minutes to be precise, requiring tokens. We had been given two free tokens when we checked in. Needless to say, mid lathering, Howard’s water had run out, so he came scurrying back to Oscar to get another token, so he could wash the soap off!
So, it was with trepidation that I went for a shower this morning. Howard stood outside the ladies, trying to explain the system of entering your shower number into the machine, before dashing into said numbered shower, so as not to waste any of your three minute allocation. A helpful German lady also joined in the explanation, telling me that shower number five didn’t lock, and number seven was out of order. I duly picked number six. I put in my token. I ran to the shower – which was exactly 26 inches by 26 inches in size, desperately tried to undress as quickly as possible, before starting what was left of my three minute shower. By the time I had washed my hair, and finished washing, the water stopped. I was left with a thin layer of soap, which I had to wipe off with my towel, which of course, was also soaking wet, since everything in this minuscule shower cubicle was soaking. Once out, I proceeded to dry my hair, and then dry my towel with my hair dryer, using as much electricity as I possibly could, in retaliation for this ridiculous and stingy showering system.
The day, however, did get better. The sun came out, and we headed off to the ‘Valley of the Temples’, just up the road from our campsite near Agrigenti. Driving along to the car park, we suddenly spotted the row of Ancient Greek temples on the ridge above. Wow – what a sight! We parked up, but just as we arrived at the entrance, a party of approximately a hundred school children had just arrived ahead of us. The security check took over half an hour – every child seemed to have some metal object hidden within their clothing, which necessitated them being sent back behind the metal detector yet again. Eventually we entered – and decided to hit the Valle de Templi at a run! We dashed past all these throngs of children, who had stopped at the first temple, and rushed on so that we could enjoy the site in peace. Once devoid of children, the place was a joy. The most impressive of all the temples on this site is the Temple of Concordia, just because it is the most intact. It is very similar to the Acropolis in Athens. Others along this amazing road of temples included the Temple to Hercules and the Temple of Hera. They were just stunning! In total, there are eight temples on this site, and they were built between 510 – 430 BC – just incredible! The name ‘valley of the temples’ is actually a misnomer, since they sit high on a ridge, and can be seen for miles around. As we drove away from the site, the three main intact temples sat in a row on the hill, and looked splendid with the blue sky behind, and fields of yellow spring flowers in the foreground.
We headed to the beach for a quick late picnic lunch, before heading westwards towards our next campsite, which as I have already explained, turned out to be closed.
However, their loss was our gain. We arrived at the next open campsite along the coast, to be met with a rather demonstrative Sicilian owner. ‘Passports in five minutes, tea in twenty!’ he ordered. We didn’t like to object – so duly turned up for tea in his campsite restaurant, along with other campers. It turned out to be a wonderful supper, with aubergine and tomato pasta, followed by steak and salad – quite a feast.
My only problem with this campsite is that it, too, has tokens with timed showers. The only blessing is that I have an extra minute tomorrow morning – a whole four minutes. Hopefully, I can get the lather off in time!

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