Saturday, June 15, 2013

Taking Our View With Us

We rented our house because of the view. For heaven's sake, who can say no to a Glass House on a Roof Terrace with a view of Capri! What a dream. The minute we set foot on the Roof Terrace, we both gasped and started murmuring to one another out of the sides of our mouths. "I love it. Do you love it?" "I want to live here." "We have to make sure they pick us as renters." "Don't mess this deal up!" And so on. Because see, our realtor had told us that Mamma Anna had to like us or she would not want us living in her house. This is the house she and her husband built as a young family and in which they raised their children.

For our first year, we used the Glass House almost every day. I spent hours up there just staring at that magical island, and watching the ferries pass to and fro. We'd have a cocktail or glass of wine in the evenings up there. On weekends, we would get a selection of meats and cheeses from Gennaro, down at the salumeria, throw in a bottle of wine and a bottle of frizzante water, and then while away the afternoon reading and napping in the Glass House. Our second year, I was pregnant. We used it, but not quite as much. We'd built more of a life, so we had more social obligations. We tried to travel on weekends a little more. And then, once Nora was born, I'd thought I'd resume use of the Glass House while La Bimba napped in the travel swing I bought just to have up there. Hah! I never did take her up there. I go up there now just to hang laundry or take it down...but what a view to have while doing such a mundane chore!

Last year at the International Festival held on the NATO base, we met a painter living not too far from us, originally from Germany, who will paint your view for you. We saw some samples of her work there, so I took her card then and always had in the back of my mind that I would love to have her paint our view. In getting ready for this move, I found her card again and decided to go for it. What a special memory for us. With Anja's permission, I am showing a photo of the painting here! I love it (I don't think my photo shows how pretty it really is). Anja included Capri, Capo Miseno, a little bit of Bacoli, and Baia Castle, with it's little beach and red lighthouse below (beach is only accessible by boat). It's everything I love about our view going home to the USA with us. I've started feeling a little depressed about leaving, despite everything I'm excited to be moving to, there is so much I'll be leaving here. I love that I can hang this beautiful painting on our wall and be able to instantly recall the special memories our Italian villa has given to us.

Note:  For anyone in Naples who wants to contact Anja Gemlau, just send me an email or post a comment below. I'll get her contact info to you. She provides such a unique memory of your Naples life for you to take home with you!


  1. That's a great view! We are also leaving Naples (in four weeks) and although we have many photographs of our view, I think a painted version would be an awesome addition to the numerous art pieces we've collected in our travels. Would you mind giving me Anja's contact info? Good luck with everything!

    1. Hi - Will you send me a message on FB (Stephanie Matthews Straub), and I'll message you back with Anja's number? It is a great piece to take home!