Day16 – Erice and Trapani

Yesterday Gaspare, the receptionist here at the Hotel Carmine, offered to give me a ride to the Florio wine cellar. On the way, I asked about his job. He’s actually an art history teacher with a Master’s Degree in Tourism. Such a charming and intelligent young man, but he needed an advanced degree to get a job as a receptionist in a hotel.

The jobs just aren’t there for art history teachers. “Can you imagine,” he asks, “a country like Italy with no jobs for art history teachers?” I asked about being a tour guide. He said the last chance to get a guide license was 20 years ago. They haven’t been offered since. Gaspare makes the best of a bad situation by learning all he can from the people from around the world who stay at the hotel.

On the way to Erice, we passed more salt flats by the sea. Erice perches on an enormous mountain surrounded by flat plains. Getting up to Erice involves hairpin turns rivaling those on Mt. Tamalpais.

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