Next stop on our travels was Bari. We went there to catch a boat (a very big boat!). This is my second time to Bari (both visits have been boat related) and I have to say that aside from catching a boat there is no good reason to go back. The old part of town, which is where all the boat people go (and by boat people I am not referring to the kind that most Australians seem inexplicably afraid of, I mean the hoards of tourists piling off the cruise boat when it pulls in to port). It has a lovely old church and lots of winding, cobbled alley ways, and is (relatively) clean and prosperous.
But outside of that Bari looks like a town that is decaying one brick at a time. We dropped our hire car at Bari airport and got a cab to the port, and when I wasn't fearing for my life (if I never catch a taxi in Bari again it will be too soon), I saw boarded up buildings, parks filled with rubbish, sports arenas rusting away. All rather sad and depressing really, and not the thing for a holiday slideshow...So instead, here are some shrines!
Being raised in a secular country by parents who where decidedly not into organised religion, I am always intrigued by people and places where religion plays a significant role in everyday life. I love these little shrines that you see everywhere in Italy (especially in the south). I love that they are so well maintained; I love the plastic flowers, the mix of kitsch and reverence; I love how they fit in to the landscape, that they peak out from freshly laundered sheets and sit next to traffic signs.