21 September 2017 | Milazzo
Geoff/Wet and windy
19th Sept. Salina to Milazzo
The forecast suddenly deteriorated and strong winds and heavy rain were in the offing. We decided to head back to Sicily itself and made for Milazzo some 30 miles away. We had a gentle sail at first but as we cleared the islands the wind increased as forecast and we had a lumpy downwind ride to Milazzo. King Aeolus had loosed the west wind for our benefit, perhaps we had offended in some way.
Milazzo is a busy ferry and industrial port with a very sheltered harbour. Shortly after we arrived so did torrential rain which had been threatening as the dark clouds built up.
The town is busy but not unpleasant, lying at the base of a narrow peninsular. Above the town, with commanding 360 degree views is the remains of the original fortified village and impressive castle dating back to pre-history. It's dominant position ensured it has been fortified by successive invaders, Normans, Aragonese, Angevins and as recently as the 19th century was garrisoned by the Bourbons, until ousted by Garibaldi. The views from the castle of the coast of Sicily and the Aeolian Islands are well worth the steep climb.
Housed in the remains of a former convent is a small ethnographic museum and workshop presided over by an elderly, enthusiastic 'Professor Branestawn'. He gave us a quick run down of various aspects of Sicilian cultural history, unfortunately in Italian, despite us telling him we only spoke English. Nevertheless it was entertaining if not particularly informative from our point of view. He ended with an impromptu performance on the 'Jews' Harp' on which he was undoubtedly proficient.