On our arrival, there is a secret agents’ convention in the hotel. They all operate in pairs and are disguised as retired couples on holiday, so we had dinner with 458 elderly couples, not knowing which ones are deadly foes and which the genuine folk from Chelmsford. Some of them went off to the Sorrento Foreigners’ Club after; playing it by the numbers, we assumed they were the pros.
In Sorrento we met Giambattista de Curtis who told us his very sad & salutary story. He fell passionately in love with a girl on holiday from Milano, who worked in the postal sorting office there. When she went home he sent her dozens of love letters telling how much he adored her. But all his letters came back with “RETURN TO SORRENTO” written on the envelopes. So he wrote the famous and desperate love song “Return to Sorrento” which was recorded by Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Meat Loaf, Dean Martin, José Carreras, Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Beniamino Gigli, Mario Lanza, Franco Corelli,Giuseppe Di Stefano, Roberto Carlos, Alfie Boe and lots of lesser opera singers. And he sold a million 78rpm records and got a gold disk and won the IAFTA song award for 1924. He was famous but miserable. Now everyone agrees it is the greatest song ever written.
Listen to the true voice of Sorrento: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzg8DTzh4yk
And the moral of the story is, if you love someone, you must never let them go.
Recap report for Inspettore Mintalbini:
The pizza chef, the receptionist in the minibar & the parrot are all still dead. Rimedia Odora, the exploding vendor of organic remedies & cosmetics, is in a safe house. The grape treading Benedictine sister struck by laser, is in hospital being treated for PTSD. The humungus fart has largely dissipated, thanks to the Servzzi Fuoco, who hosed down the whole village. George & Connie are now serving their great country in Venice. The Smirnovsk gang are all busted and serving 144 years in San Quentin. David’s statue has not yet been returned. I am still in my nun’s habit with Christiane & Rosemary in little black numbers. Napolitani has survived and a new prime minister has been elected. The only fly in the ointment is that the penguin mother superior is out on the loose and Janet has been suspiciously silent.
We decided to take the red bus around Sorrento. Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti & Andrea Bocelli, all let us down regarding a private performance of “Return to Sorrento”, so we’ll organise our own.
As we were setting out the chairs, I saw the shadow of Mother Penguin drawing her weapon on the far side of the Piazza. She shouted out “The price of one Faraglioni is a live boy child.”
We were on the harbourside,so in a flash, we leapt on to a day trip pleasure boat to Positano. The evil nun pulled an Uzzi automatic from her huge knickers and started firing at us. I launched my sports walking stick with pointy tip, like a spear and it pierced her abdomen; guts and dinner spewed out onto the harbour paving but she continued firing. I threw my tour-bus headphones as a sling to throttle her then I snatched Christiane’s Panama hat and flung it like a frisbee saucer, with all my strength, at the Mother. It sliced her head off clean, which bounced around on the ground for a few seconds. Blood gushed from her neck like a fountain high into the air, bits of nerve & muscle twitched, some residues of spinal cord & brain dribbled over her shoulders. Iris & Jade & Jean-Pierre were screaming at the top of their voices for gelatos, but we said “no” that would be disrespectful.
To solve the whole case, now we only have to find and return the original David statue. Shouldn’t be too hard. The price of one Faraglioni is a live boy child.