Morning Seaside Walk in Nervi

Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi
1 January 2014

In Italy, it is tradition to wear something red for New Years and of course, in the old days, you would toss something old out the window. Apparently, people started to throw out tv or VCR, causing many deaths outside so there is no more throwing out of the window.

I didn’t have anything to throw out that is old and useless unless I consider throwing out my job. But I didn’t really waking up thinking about my job, which I think is a good thing, considering how much I dread going back.

My boyfriend suggested going to the passeggiata a mare, which he told me is very beautiful. A passeggiata is the Italian word for promenade. Do you think they call a prom, shortened from promenade, a pass, shortened form of passeggiata?

In Bogliasco, past the Roman bridge and above the Club Nautical Bogliasco, there is passagiata that leads up to the Chiesa Natività di Maria Santissima, a beautiful church that has high steeples, one can see from the hills above. At night, the cross on top of the steeple lights up like a floating sign in the night.

But the one he suggested was supposedly more beautiful than the one in Bogliasco.

We woke up fairly early, hoping to miss any crowd. We had to actually take the main roads leaving the Comune di Bogliasco. Grey clouds were slowly rolling in, sunlight was trying so hard to break through the dense dreariness. The day held out well as the cool air was displaced by the brisk walk along the railway, passing local walkers and runners.
Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi

At the fork in front of pension house, Villa di Capolungo, we turned left towards a church. We asked a pregnant woman who was power-walking beside us where was the entrance for the passeggiata. It was a left turn towards what looked like a small parking lot. The street grew smaller, the path less concrete and more like laid out bricks. Passing through Via Bruno Bonanno (which is apropos since it sounds just like Buon Anno, happy new year), the road begins to feel like a calle in Venice. The road opens up to a small beach, boats hung upside down for the winter season.
Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi

As we walked passed the rather sad beach, we walked up and was led to the passeggiata a mare, officially named, Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi, the heroine wife of Garibaldi, who fought for the unity of Italy but fell to her death from malaria when the French won Rome, forcing them to escape. Italy was a malaria state up until post World War II when the Americans came in and sprayed the entire marshland. Sardinia was the last state to have malaria as it was an island prone to heat and humidity.
Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi

The passeggiata was absolutely beautiful and was the highlight of the trip. Though winter offers a bleak grey cliff side dipping into green blue sea, imagine what a sunny summer day would be like. Trees were mostly bare and black, those still with leaves were gold and red or cacti and aloe. The pathway was not empty, several people milling and moving about. We passed some fishermen, most hanging at the bottom of the cliff, on rocks jutting out into the sea.
Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi

Despite the sea being dark, you could still see through to the algae and rocks below. We dared to even go off the path to the boulders below, waves crashing madly, even though my boyfriend was very much against it, arguing that locals like him don’t go down there. Have a little adventure in your heart and be daring!
Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi

We walked about an hour, mostly stopping to take photos. We reached an old fort for the Alpine club, facing the sea. Because of scheduled lunch, we turned turned back.
Passeggiata Anita Garibaldi

Post lunch, we visited Nonna for a little while but as she was tired, we returned home early. Since the sun had not yet set and would not for another hour, I thought it would be nice to walk down the hill. I had downloaded this app, OffMaps^2, which works without internet or cellular service. It uses local GPS to determine your location. Every time before I leave the state, I always download a map and the Wikipedia source so that I could read the history of various sites and spots worth noting.

The app pointed out a trail from San Bernardo, which is the top of one hill of Bogliasco,to the sea. The trail is badly maintained, rocks with barely any mud keeping together eat into the soft soles of my vegan boots, making for an uncomfortable hike down. Donkeys came to greet us at one point. But the entire way down was just the two of us on the untrodden path. The steep walk ended with brick laden road towards Via Favora where handwritten signs, to the sea, pointed the way home.

It was only a 30 minute walk but my legs and hips were feeling the work out. It’s amazing how well people in this small town can move about in small cars and motorcycle. I would think a 4Runner would work best, if not for the small roads.
San Bernardo

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