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Tag: Vespa

Aeolian Lipari – Pumice stone and Around the island vespa tour

Lipari is slow living island north of Sicily, part of the Aeolian islands. Here Pumice stone was extracted for stone washed jeans and the beauty industry. After 2nd world war Mussolini’s daughter was placed in exile here.

As to this date you can bring your car with if booked an accommodation, easiest is though by Vespa.

What you need is a Vespa

Living in Sicily the one vehicle you need is actually a Vespa if you do not live far out in the countryside. A strong vespa. This beacuse of the traffic, problems with parking and comodity. With the Vespa you can do groceries, get your dry cleaning, park close to city center and pass heavy traffic in big cities and tourist areas. You also pay less taxes. Vespa is something every sicilian has in their garage and as it is not raining so much in this island, you can use it all year around.

Here I have a cheap car (cars gets ruined every year in the traffic with damages ecc) and a strong Vespa. I drive only the Vespa from April to November and then mix driving with the car during the winter.


Boendes p? Sicilien ?r det enda fordonet du beh?ver en Vespa, om du inte bor l?ngt ute p? landet. En stark vespa. Det pga trafiken, problem med parkering och bekv?mlighet. Med Vespa kan du g?ra handla, h?mta din kemtv?tt, parkera n?ra stadsk?rnan och passera tung trafik i storst?der och turistomr?den. Du betalar ocks? mindre skatt. Vespa ?r n?got som varje sicilian har i sitt garage och eftersom det inte regnar s? mycket p? den h?r ?n kan du anv?nda den hela ?ret.

H?r har jag en billig bil (bilar f?rst?rs varje ?r i trafiken med skador ecc) och en stark Vespa. Jag k?r endast Vespa fr?n april till november och blandar sedan k?rning med bilen under vintern.

Driving in Sicily – How to survive

One golden rule about Sicily is Law says one thing – Reality is something else.

Sicily is filled with cars and the situation is not getting any better. Generally if a family has four family members, there are four cars, perhaps also two vespas and a motorbike. Now when I think of it also I have one car and two vespas. If you look into the sicilian cars you often see just one person in it, they do not plan to go together.

The traffic situation changes very much dependning on where you are in Sicily. In Ragusa area you find calmer traffic, order, people using seat belts, children in car seats, people using helmets and so on… Ragusa has always been the Germany in Sicily. Then you start to move towards Catania and Palermo and there you find vepsas on the right and left, a car for five people may have eight sitting inside, a whole family on a vespa with no helmets and cars parked all over. In Messina five cars ignored the red light in 20 minutes.

For guests renting a car in Sicily I always advice the following “You have to drive like only you exist in the world. No one will give you priority and if you follow north european rules, you will never reach your destination. In road crossings if turning left, you have to sneak out slowly, stopping the cars on the left field and continue slowly forward stopping the cars from right side. This way you cross a road in Sicily. If parking confuses you, check how other cars has parked in the area. If they have a paid ticket in the window, then pay. If not, just park there. You can also ask the closest shop or bar for advice. Or park on the side of the road checking that you do not block the traffic.” In Sicily many times fast parking means parking on the sidewalk and put emergemcy lights on.?Double and triple parking is more standard than exception. I recommend not to do this.

The city of Catania got tired of double- and tripple parking in central city that stopped even the public transport, so the municipality put some cameras in the streets and sent the fines home. In one month they collected over 80,000 fines.

For safety: always drive with locked doors especially in Catania and Palermo. No one will point a gun on you, but open doors means e.g that someone can steal you bag on the seat. Bags always keep on the floor. Never leave anything in the car if you are not there; put shoppingbags in the trunk and papers ecc under the seat. In Taormina area I drive more safe, but when I got to Catania I lock the steering wheel with a chain that goes under seat if I leave the car for longer hours. Your items in the car may be stolen or the car itself, but you do not have to worry about someone treathening you. Same with Vespas, lock the rear wheel with a chain.

In the sicilian traffic you will notice sicilians anger and frustrations; lots of shouting, hand gestures and using the car horn. Do not stress! It is always the same.

If you have an accident, never move the car, leave the scene as it is even if you block the traffic, as it is the police who will report what may have happened. Never listen to the counterpart what to do, wait for the police. Insurance frauds are alarmingly high in Italy and an accident is a perfect occasion to milk extra money from you. In small accidents the sicilian custom is to solve the issue there by giving some cash to the other party to solve the damages without dragging in the insurance companies.

If you rent a car many companies offers full insurance, it means that for a small amount you have full cover and can return with just one wheel not paying anything at all, they call it Full Kasko. And if you get a parking ticket, or a fine, pay it. Paying it within five days gives you up to 30% discount. If you do not pay it will get more expensive as they will deduct the money from your card and often add an extra fine of 50 euro.

Good luck out there laughing well, you’ll see things to remember for life!


In Catania red light is only a suggestionI Catania ?r r?tt ljus bara ett f?rslag



En gyllene regel om Sicilien ?r Lagen s?ger en sak – Verkligheten ?r n?got annat.

Sicilien ?r fylld med bilar och situationen blir inte b?ttre. Generellt om en familj har fyra familjemedlemmar finns det fyra bilar, kanske ocks? tv? vespor och en motorcykel. Nu n?r jag t?nker p? det har jag ocks? en bil och tv? vespor. Om du tittar p? de sicilianska bilarna ser du ofta bara en person i den, de planerar inte att ?ka tillsammans.

Trafiksituationen f?r?ndras v?ldigt mycket beroende av var du befinner dig p? Sicilien. I Ragusa-omr?det finner du lugnare trafik, ordning, personer som anv?nder bilb?lten, barn i bilstolar, personer som anv?nder hj?lmar och s? vidare … Ragusa har alltid varit Tyskland p? Sicilien. Sedan b?rjar du flytta mot Catania och Palermo och d?r har du vepsor till h?ger och v?nster. En bil f?r fem personer kan ha ?tta sittande inuti, en hel familj p? en vespa utan hj?lmar och bilar parkerade ?verallt. I Messina ignorerade fem bilar det r?da ljuset p? 20 minuter.

F?r g?ster som hyr en bil p? Sicilien, rekommenderar jag alltid f?ljande: “Du m?ste k?ra som om bara du existerar i v?rlden. Ingen kommer att prioritera dig och om du f?ljer nordeuropeiska regler kommer du aldrig att n? din destination. I v?nstersv?ng m?ste du smyga l?ngsamt ut, stoppa bilarna p? v?nster fil och forts?tt l?ngsamt fram?t och stoppa bilarna fr?n h?ger sida. P? s? s?tt korsar du en v?g p? Sicilien. Om parkeringsplatsen f?rvirrar dig, kolla hur andra bilar har parkerat. Om de har en betald biljett i f?nstret, betalar du det. Om inte, bara parkera d?r. Du kan ocks? fr?ga n?rmaste aff?r eller bar f?r r?d. Eller parkera p? sidan av v?gen och kontrollera att du inte blockerar trafiken.” P? Sicilien inneb?r m?nga g?nger snabb parkering parkering p? trottoaren och s?tta p? n?dblinkers. Dubbel- och trippelparkering ?r mer regel ?n undantag. Jag rekommenderar att du inte g?r det h?r.

Staden Catania blev tr?tt p? dubbel- och trippelparkering i centrala staden som stoppade ?ven kollektivtrafiken, s? kommunen satte upp n?gra kameror p? gatorna och skickade b?terna hem. P? en m?nad samlade de in ?ver 80 000 b?ter.

F?r s?kerhet: k?r alltid med l?sta d?rrar, s?rskilt i Catania och Palermo. Ingen kommer att peka med en pistol p? dig, men ?ppna d?rrar betyder till exempel att n?gon kan stj?la v?skan p? s?tet. V?skor har man alltid p? bilgolvet. L?mna aldrig n?gonting i bilen om du inte ?r d?r. L?gg shoppingkassar i bagaget och papper ecc under s?tet. I Taormina-omr?det k?r jag s?kert, men n?r jag ?ker till Catania l?ser jag ratten med en kedja som g?r under s?tet om jag l?mnar bilen l?ngre tid. Dina saker i bilen kan bli stulna eller bilen sj?lv, men du beh?ver inte oroa dig f?r n?gon som skulle hota dig. Samma med Vespor, l?s bakhjulet med en kedja.

I den sicilianska trafiken kommer du att m?rka sicilianarnas ilska och frustrationer; massor av skrik, handgester och tutande. Stressa inte! Det ?r alltid s?h?r.

Om du har en olycka, flytta aldrig bilen, l?mna scenen som den ?r ?ven om du blockerar trafiken, eftersom det ?r polisen som kommer att rapportera vad som kan ha h?nt. Lyssna aldrig p? motparten vad man ska g?ra, v?nta p? polisen. F?rs?kringsbedr?gerier ?r orov?ckande h?ga i Italien och en olycka ?r ett perfekt tillf?lle att mj?lka extra pengar fr?n dig. Vid sm?olyckor ?r sicilianska stilen att l?sa problemet p? plats genom att ge n?gra pengar till den andra parten f?r att l?sa mindre skador utan att dra in f?rs?kringsbolagen.

Om du hyr en bil erbjuder m?nga f?retag full f?rs?kring, det inneb?r att du f?r en liten summa har full t?ckning och kan ?terv?nda med bara ett hjul utan att beh?va betala n?got, det kallas Full Kasko. Och om du f?r parkeringsb?ter, eller annan b?ter, betala den. Betalar du inom fem dagar ges upp till 30% rabatt. Om du inte betalar blir det dyrare eftersom de kommer att dra av pengarna fr?n ditt kort och ofta l?gger till en extra b?ter p? 50 euro.

Lycka till d?r ute och skratta gott, du kommer se saker att minnas f?r livet!

Living here you scratch your head many times

So when I was to buy my Vespa there was of course several changes, as it always is when you buy something in Italy. The first version I booked was not available anymore from the Piaggio factory, I got to know couple of days later.? I went back to the seller and asked what was wrong as this model is new for this year and I do not believe that they stopped producing the Vespa this quickly. So he said that the model is available, but I have to pay for another version that will cost me 500 euros more. I have to buy a Vespa with ABS as this is a new thing in Italy and the law says that no cars or any Vespas are allowed to be produced without ABS. This is a very new thing in Italy and it is the law, said the seller.

So I thought with my german neighbor what is this super new ABS in Italy now?. And as I can trust the seller I agreed to pay 500 euros more for this supernew thing. We sat in the car back home and both were silent, obviously thinking what this amazing new ABS thing is in Italy 2016. Then halfways we burst in to laughter as we finally understood that ABS is about the automatic break system we have had for two decades in Sweden and Germany.

In a country that is so opposite and may I kindly say delayed in many thing, you feel quite stupid sometimes.? But atleast we laugh and have stories to tell. Thank God I did not put the question on socials before our heads clicked.

S? n?r jag skulle k?pa min Vespa kom naturligtvis flera f?r?ndringar, eftersom det alltid ?r s? n?r du k?per n?got i Italien. Den f?rsta versionen jag bokat var inte tillg?nglig l?ngre fr?n Piaggios fabrik, fick jag veta n?gra dagar senare. Jag gick tillbaka till s?ljaren och fr?gade vad som var fel eftersom denna modell ?r ny f?r i ?r och jag tror inte att de slutat producera Vespan redan. S? han sade att modellen ?r tillg?nglig, men jag m?ste betala f?r en annan version som kommer att kosta mig 500 euro mer. Jag m?ste k?pa en Vespa med ABS eftersom detta ?r en ny sak i Italien och lagen s?ger att inga bilar eller n?gra vespor f?r framst?llas utan ABS. Detta ?r en mycket ny sak i Italien och det ?r lagen, sade s?ljaren.

S? jag t?nkte med min tyska granne vad denna super nya ABS nu ?r i Italien? D? jag kan lita p? s?ljaren gick jag med p? att betala 500 euro mer f?r denna supernya sak. Vi satt i bilen p?v?g hem och b?da var tysta, naturligtvis funderandes ?ver vad denna fantastiska nya ABS sak ?r i Italien 2016. Halvv?gs sprack vi b?da i gapskratt n?r vi ?ntligen f?rst?tt att ABS ?r det automatiska bromssystemet vi haft i tv? decennier i Sverige och Tyskland.

I ett land som ?r s? motsatt och kan jag v?nligt s?ga f?rsenad i m?nga saker, k?nner du helt enkelt korkad ibland. Men iallafall s? skrattar vi och har historier att ber?tta. Tack och lov att jag inte st?llde fr?gan p? sociala n?tverk innan v?ra huvuden klickade.

Lektion; Motorino och Jojo

I morse köpte jag olja till motorinon, Touring 2T, alldeles själv! Mackkillen lärde att trycket i däcken ska vara 1,9-2. Så nu har jag lärt mig två saker! Sakta med säkert är jag påväg att bli the queen of motorinos!
Tydligen blev jag lurad på 6 euro. Oljan ska kosta 7 euro, betalade 13. Bastardo!

Min stolthet på hjul

Detta är min stolthet på två hjul. Utan rullande saker kommer man ingenvart. Ja, iförsig går man…men det tar alltför lång tid. WROOOM! Har köpt helförsäkring, inte van vid trafiken än.

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