It’s sad to say goodbye to Sicily, our home for three months. What a fabulous place, its been amazing. We decided to get up early yesterday and gun it to the ferry an hour & half away in Messina. Leaving just after 8.30am we got on the toll road as this saved 2 hours more driving, yes two more hours non toll. One thing that wont be missed in Sicily is the bridges. Whilst the roads are better than mainland Italy, you have to question the bridges. Every join should be joined or have a plastic like grate that covers the trenches. How we havent had a blow out we do not know. Yesterday it felt like we crossed hundreds of them to get to Messina. If it wasnt a bridge it was a tunnel. And that’s the other problem no lighting in tunnels. Pitch black and with potholes inside, no wonder the Italians drive like they have a death wish. They probably count their lucky stars they survive bridges and tunnels on a daily basis. Arriving in Messina we joined the crazy main road. This is a system of a main road with intersections with no road signs that everyone merges in from. They then proceed to either double or triple park in the second of the two lanes. Yes this is common everywhere and you would think we would be ok with it by now, if you are going to survive in Italy you have to drive like an Italian. Following the sat nav and road signs to Bluferries, the company we came over on. The office was all closed up and when I came out Jason was talking to the port guys. Directing us 3km down the road to Caronte & Tourist ferries. Pulling up there is no parking to buy your ticket, you just jump out and join the queue. Paying €10 more (€56) it was well worth it. A bigger ferry, faster and dogs allowed up on deck. I didn’t get sea sick like i was dreading on the smaller bluferries. So well worth the extra ten. Arriving in Villa San Giovanni, we waved Sicily goodbye and decided to do a marathon drive to Marina Di Amendola, another 3.5 hours away. The wind the last couple of days has been wild, the whole trip it battered us no matter where we were. Up hilltops, in valleys or along the coast. The best road in Italy is from Messina to up past Cosenza. It’s a free autostrada that is pretty much immaculate. As we approached the border of Basilicata and Calabria the mountains came into view, snow-capped. We were happy we were heading to the east coast. Arriving at Amedola our sat nav missed the entry into the town and headed us for a 2.3m bridge. After the massive drive we were too tired to try to navigate this so drove an extra 18 minutes to Marina di Nova Siri. Parked in a forest, it’s a sosta with power. €2 for 8 hours power. We expected to it to have run out but it’s still going 12 hours later. Also we thought a guy would be round to collect €5-10 for staying but no one has arrived. So it ended up being a great stay. Just us, no one except the odd car cruising for the night. Today we need a food shop, so we plan to move about 40 minutes up the coast. To give you a rough idea of where we are we started at the big toe of the boot of Italy. Travelling up over the top and are now under the inside of the heel. In the country of love (amore), Happy Valentines day everyone.