Pól Ó Lorcáin
Paul Larkin

Chroniclers are privileged to enter where they list, to come and go through keyholes, to ride upon the wind, to overcome in their soarings up and down, all obstacles of distance, time and place.
Charles Dickens - Barnaby Rudge, Chapter The Ninth

New York – Exciting gateway to the northern USA

There is an old Italian adage that says – ‘Vedi Napoli e poi muori’ - “See Naples and die”, and having been to that exciting, edgy, food riot of a city on two memorable occasions I can understand the underlying message, which basically implies that once you have been to Naples you have seen and experienced everything that life has to offer. There can be nothing more. All your senses (including the sixth one) have been satiated.
Well, I drove a car and then on a separate occasion a big white van containing a film crew across Naples and I believe the experience will stay with me, even beyond the grave. If you don’t show your balls (as in cojones – courage) when driving in Naples you will be cut up and cut off and never get to where you want to go. You see a gap and you go for it like all the rest; even if that gap is on the tramlines. If you hesitate, kind of half go for the gap, in the nanoseconds and millimetres that separate all traffic, you get the finger, the flick under the neck and a cacophony of horns and mothers. Readers who want to see this in the flesh, as it were, should check out various YouTube sites. This for instance –
which gives fantastic examples of overtaking on the inside “slow” lane of a dual carriageway as most Naples drivers could not be bothered waiting their turn to get into the fast lane, preferring instead that imaginary middle lane in their heads. But then, there are other kinds of white knuckle rides and we’ll come to that subject shortly.
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