My trip to Calabria occurred just before things heated up for the summer. Don't misunderstand...it was plenty hot, but the summer season hadn't kicked into full effect.
In Italy, August is the month when most Italians stop working and head to the sea or mountains for an entire month.
From what I understand, things get popping in June. In Calabria, the fishermen determine when the lidos (beach restaurants and umbrella service) should open, based on how choppy or calm the water is.
Judging by how crowded Soverato was a few days ago (I'm writing this on June 1), the lidos there were already given permission. Soverato, though just 5 minutes away by car from Montauro and Montepaone, is in a bay, so the water is calmer. Lidos will open in Montepaone on June 15.
The Town is Abuzz
My new friends here have told me that Calabria is quiet until it warms up in May. I love seeing how the area is gearing up for the summer season.
The lidos have been closed all winter, but now men are painting them, bringing in furniture, and tidying up the sand.
They're mowing the grass on the sides of the road. I even saw a controlled burn of grass (something that alarmed my Southern California sensibilities). Calabrians are stocking their restaurants, straightening their aprons, and cracking their knuckles, ready for action.
In some ways, I'm sorry to miss the show. But I've loved being here in shoulder season because I have had the beach completely to myself. Few Italians brave the "icy" waters this time of year, but for a gal accustomed to San Diego's frigid waters, this is nearly bath-warm!
I'll be back in September, when everything starts shutting down. Apparently the end of ferragosto also means Italians put away their speedos and don their jackets. But I'll be back in that glorious sea!