Capri, April 12th, 1909

Capri_1I ought not to write as I am in such a wretched humor. We had our first experience of hotel sharking and tipping, which came near spoiling my appetite for more traveling. We carry six suit cases and three satchels between us and it is a constant pay, pay, pay.

To begin with, they made our bill for two days, while we stayed only 1 3/4. He then wanted to charge me for changing my travelers check. When I came to the concierge, he tried to do me out of $2.50, and the tipping took my breath away.

Arrived at the landing, we had to pay for carrying our luggage to the boat, we had to pay to carry it to the steamer, and when we got off the steamer, we had to pay again. Just tip, tip, all the time.

The three girls went into the Blue Grotto, but Mama and I remained on board. The view of the bay is beautiful, and we would have enjoyed it immensely if it had not been for the disagreeable features preceding the “Coming to anchor.”

It was one o’clock before we landed at Capri. The hotel runner took us in, and two and three women bounced upon our luggage. I told the runner that I would pay one Lire and no more and gained my first victory this day.

Arrived at the hotel, we found that our rooms had been taken, and we had to take rooms on the third, fourth and fifth story with no “Lift” either. You know how the place is built, and I am afraid that we will be lost some evening on our way to our respective rooms.

Capri_2After lunch, we took a walk past some beautiful villas and saw some grand scenery. The place is full of strangers, mostly Germans, I judge, the hotel looks cold and uninviting to us after our fine quarters in Naples, and I am afraid that we will not stay long. We all have “Cold feet,” but this may change after to-morrow.

Your dear letter of the 27th received here alright and glad to have such good news. I hope that you have landed Cairo, although I understand that they have no money. Glad to hear of sale to Carondelet Lutherans. Haven’t thought of business since I left home, and, if we move at this rate, it will keep me busy to figure out tips!

Yours of the 28th to hand just now, and it put everybody in good humor. We are now sitting in the little sitting room and swapping experiences, which reminded Grace of our dinner at Naples on Sunday. We had music, (Italiano of course) and when we left a man stood at the stair case with a plate, he bowed and Grace bowed, thinking he was offering tooth picks, which she did not want. I passed and saw money on the plate, received a profound bow, put my hand into my pocket (a habit which you acquire here) and deposited 20¢ [centesimi] (4¢) with a bow. Did not dare to look back to see another bow.

At lunch to-day, Grace asked for Crackers and waiter promptly brought a nut cracker. Well it’s time to close, the first bell has sounded.

Had mail from Tante Lenchen welcoming us.

All’s well that ends well. Mama sends love. Again your,

Papa.

 

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