A scooter buzzed past the restaurant balcony window at Positano. There were two people on board, the person sitting at the back had long auburn hair streaming out from beneath her helmet. I didn’t think twice about it as we were celebrating my second eldest’s nineteenth birthday and we were concentrated on perusing the menu and filling our stomachs. Or rather, my voracious son’s were. The rest of us were sipping the Prosecco and nibbling on the foccacia, compliments of the house due to her birthday.
My friend unexpectedly appeared in the doorway of the pizzeria. Glowing with the breeze blown hair, her vivacity turned the heads of everyone at the tables. First thing she said was ‘Oh, you’ve gone straight’, referring to my daughter’s normally naturally curly hair. She then presented me with a package containing her handmade soaps in my favourite scents.
Her bubbly personality in keeping with her craft, radiates energy. She’d accompanied us into the mountains a few days back and when I mentioned that I wanted to try her soaps she’d abandoned all, just before her dinner party ( at a time where I’d have been panicking), to package and personally deliver them to me before I left town.
The scents in her soaps are redolent of the wafts of citrus blossom carried through the garden on sea breezes. Their texture's a creamy milk, crafted using the natural ingredients available on the Amalfi Coast. Rich Goats milk features heavily and she goes to great lengths to collect it high in the Lattari mountains at Santa Maria del Castello. The soaps and bath products reflect the chamomile, mimosa (wattle), rosemary, mint, figs, and citrus fruit which revel in the climate and real honey from Positano bees.
They are luxurious products but their affordable price belies the quality of the ingredients. They are a real pleasure to use and to receive.
When we got home from the restaurant in the balmy April night and were greeted by a cloud of fireflies dancing amongst the citrus groves, I was very happy that I could bring a part of the coast back with me; through the memories, the lemons and her soaps.