Cat and Daniel in Bari

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Here’s the view from the breakfast table. This is Bari, the first stop on the cruise ship. And now here’s some snap shots.

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For some reason, after visiting the cathedral in Bari, we were taken to the fish markets. According to the lady, it was there that we could see an octopus getting its head smashed in, and also, there were men who apparently were prone to catcalling the pretty girls.

“Well this is delightful,” I said to Daniel as we walked through the markets, stinking of fish and guts.

“Yeah…and no one’s given me a wolf whistle yet.”

I rolled my eyes at Daniel’s vanity. “Come on, you already know that you’re hot.”

“Oh, is that a confession?”

I simply stuck my tongue out at him. “Silly Cat,” he chuckled. “I know what you-” He was cut off by a sudden wolf whistle.

“I think you’re being paged,” I informed him.

He shook his head. “Nope, that’s for you, Miss Madigan.” He angled his head towards the source of the sound.

I turned in that direction. A boy- yes, a teenage boy, not an old seedy fisherman- grinned at me when I caught his eye. “Ciao bella!” he called.

I immediately started giggling, as Daniel looked on in amusement. “Well isn’t this sweet. Cat Madigan is giggling over a boy.”

I just smiled. “I’m pretty,” I said simply.

Later on…

“Please tell me that you’re not going in,” Daniel pleaded as I made a beeline for the shoe shop.

“Ten euro for these boots!” I exclaimed, cheerfully ignoring Daniel. My own were tearing apart at the soles, and there was still a week left of this tour to go, with only my white sneakers which probably reeked of the fish market now, and my sandals, which were far from day shoes to walk around Katakolon in.

Plus there was the fact that they had black lace.

“You and your lace fetish,” Daniel scoffed.

At that moment, another pair of shoes caught my eye. “Okay, I’m sorry,” Daniel said. “Please buy the boots so we don’t have to stay here a moment longer. Please? Don’t go near that other pair, we’ll be in here all-”

It was then that a bunch of girls, nice ones, walked into the store. “…well, I’m doomed,” Daniel conceded, shaking his head.

Back on the boat…

“Sex on the beach,” I told the waiter.

“Well, if you insist…”

I ignored Daniel. “Zero,” I added.

“No alcohol?” Daniel enquired as the waiter walked away.

“One of us has to be sober,” I reminded him. “And it may as well be me as I’m not allowed to drink.”

“Oh yes, in Reality, you’re still a minor.” Daniel watched the waiter bring back my drink. “And therefore, should not be drinking something with a name like that. Allow me.” He reached for my Sex on the Beach.

“Get your own,” I told him. “Besides, I took you for a guy who had whiskey, or scotch. Not fruity cocktails.”

“Because you’ve never had alcohol, allow me to enlighten you,” Daniel said. “Alcohol is disgusting.”

I raised an eyebrow. “That doesn’t stop you,” I pointed out.

“It’s not liquor, it’s medicine,” he insisted. “My point is, the only reason people became accustomed to alcohol was because there was a time where the only alternative was the water, which then was less than healthy. Think of the concept like you would coffee.”

At that I made a face. “Exactly. And it’s the same with alcohol. You’d only be able to drink it because you’ve gotten used to the taste. The fruity taste makes alcohol a lot better.”

“I see…” I spot Daniel’s flask in his coat pocket. “So what’s in that?”

“Medicine,” he repeated. “Nothing more, nothing less.” He took a swig.

After dinner…

“You must be joking.”

“Kaya wants to dance,” I told Daniel.

“This is the tarantella. Far from what she’s used to.”

I don’t care. Besides, Cat’s likely to get fat from all the food she’s been having. She needs to exercise.

“I went for a swim today, and we were walking around Bari this morning!”

Good for you. I still want to dance.

“I’m considering walking out of here now, to be honest.”

Are you really ready to listen to me bitch all night?

“…fair point.” With that, I closed my eyes and lifted myself out. Daniel took my hand and lead me to the seat next to the dance floor, and we sat and watched Kaya.

She was quite a good dancer, though it took her a bit to understand the Tarantella. But by the end, she was smiling and laughing, as if she hadn’t spent the last years of her life in fear and pain. “Did you enjoy yourself?” Daniel asked, when she came over.

She merely smiled. “You need to stretch more,” she informed me. “Your body is clumsy when it comes to dancing.”

I grimaced. My mother detests dancing. If she saw me- well, you -now, she’d have something to say about it.

“If I cared what my mother thought, then I would’ve taken my life before the espers got it,” she said flatly, ignoring Daniel’s and my discomfort at the idea. “Besides, your mother is not here, thank god.”

“Her father is,” Daniel inserted.

I wouldn’t worry about him, I informed them both.

“Yeah, he’s only interested in the tour,” Daniel said. “Our Cat Madigan has been good, in terms of her ‘blackouts’.”

“Do you go somewhere secret?” Kaya asked thoughtfully.

Sometimes, I said. It happens midday now, instead of the evenings. I just go to the bathroom when it happens.

“Well fetch me if she does it in public,” Kaya said to Daniel. “In case she screams as she did in Rome.”

Shut up Kaya.

“Fine.”>

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