Hearing Impaired

Shit scared, white knuckle ride, scared witless, horrified, afraid, anxious, fearful, panicked, panicky, petrified, shaken, terrified, aghast, having cold feet, panic stricken, terror stricken.

Or perhaps...

afraid, abashed, aghast, alarmed, anxious, apprehensive, aroused, blanched, cowardly, cowed, daunted, discouraged, disheartened, dismayed, distressed, disturbed, faint-hearted, fearful, fearsome, frightened, frozen, funky, have cold feet, horrified, in awe, intimidated, nervous, panic-stricken, perplexed, perturbed, petrified, rattled, run scared, scared, scared stiff, scared to death, shocked, spooked, startled, stunned, suspicious, terrified, timid, timorous, trembling, upset, worried.

ZONKERS.

When searching for synonyms for shit scared, one of the websites that I visited also suggested extremly frightened.

That may well be true, but it just does not quite convey what I am trying to get across when I talk about our trip from Sorrento to Positano.

This 16km trip is serviced by local buses, leaving every half hour or hour depending on the time of day. Many tour buses are doing the trip. You can purchase tickets for as little as 2 euro.

What could go wrong on our southward jaunt across the Sorrentine Peninsula to a picture postcard Almalfi coast seaside village?

It all started off harmlessly enough, with the coach picking up more passengers at nearby villages. The only concern was that the bus was jam packed, with every seat taken and every square metre of floor space being taken by standing passengers.

It was an unfortunate fact the we were two of those standing. After a right turn at San Angello we headed for the hills.

When you are on a plain which is say, 1000mtrs in elevation, you do not necessarily appreciate how high you are, but if you come to the edge of a cliff on that plain, you can then appreciate the distance to sea level.

After going through a couple of small villages in the middle of the peninsular, we eventually came to the sea when the road started to wind its way around the outside of the cliffs that I alluded to earlier.

Having to stand up in the bus exaggerated the feeling of impending doom each time we took a left hand turn, and the bus lurched onto two wheels as it barely gripped the edge of the road surface, just preventing us from tumbling 400 metres into the sea below. Dead.

Right hand turns were not so bad, if it did happen to tip over, it would only smash into the vertical rock face that was on our left. Not dead, only injured.

In the movie, Contact, Jodie Foster spends 24 hours aboard a special pod which is suspended above water, all in an attempt to contact the aliens. When the pod dropped she travelled through time over a considerable period accompanied by suitable dramatic dream like sequences Hollywood is really good at. From the outside however, the pod simply drops the 30 metres or so into the water.

Needless to say I felt like Jodie Foster. It probably didn't take that long to travel the 10klms or so along the cliff edge, but it felt like my life was passing before me. I did not see any aliens either.

To add insult to injury (mental anguish), just like Jodie, no one believes my experience either. Take a look and decide for yourselves...

Positano Trip 1

By cliffs, I mean cliffs. The cliffs above Positatno. The slightly less vertiginous surfaces that the houses are perched upon are, no doubt, the result of rocks falling from the cliffs above.

Positano Trip 2

After walking for about 2klms downhill, we reached this point. Note how the road actually extends beyond the cliff. This is common all along the road to Positano.

Positano Trip 4

The only way to build is up. Because land area is calculated on the flat surface, the blocks of land must be extremely small.

Positano Trip 5

I thought it was my imagination the first time round, but we attempted to take a selfie again, and again happened to get these old fogeys. It can't be a coincidence.

Positano Trip 6

There is literally no where to go but up. The main road is at a level above the top line of houses.

Positano Trip 7

More up.

Positano Trip 8

It's hard not to find a restaurant without a view.

Positano Trip 9

Car parking spaces are at a premium. This is why drivers park illegally on roads that are barely wide enough for 2 small cars let only 2 big buses, especially when there are people on scooters contantly weaving in between the buses.

Positano Trip 10

When you get into the villages,(or, to be more accurate, above the villages) when the bus goes over the edge, you are probably only going to get seriously injured, not killed outright, as the bus will land on top of a house. The residents may well be killed.

At least on the way back we were on the other side of the road, so the chances of survival were better with our wheels not being on the cliff edge. Plus, we had a seat.

Oh, by the way, Hearing Impaired?  Rhyming slang for shit scared.

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