Negative News Received in Naples #BlogchatterA2Z

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This post has been written for the theme “26 Places, 26 Memories” for the #AtoZChallenge.


Naples is an ancient city located in Southern Italy. It’s known to have beautiful art and architecture, the best pizzas in the world, and grungy streets with a distinctive character. The city of Pompeii that perished under Mount Vesuvius, is located nearby.

As I’ve noted in an earlier post, I visited Italy in June 2014 for my honeymoon. We spent a couple of days exploring Naples before moving on to the Amalfi coast. On the way back, we stopped at Naples to catch a train to Rome, where we were scheduled to visit the Vatican City. However, we received a phone call that made us change our course.


If you remember, I kept waking every night at 3:00 a.m. after the spooky incident at our hotel in Sorrento. The night before we were travelling to Naples, I was up yet again. I’d begun leaving the bathroom lights on, so I wouldn’t have to lay awake in the dark. The dim lights sometimes projected funny shapes on the wall. That night, I thought I saw the shape of a black bird. In my terrified mental state, I assumed it was the bird of death, and took the superstition very seriously.

The next morning, my husband had arranged a speed boat to take us to the stunning Blue Grotto, a cave located near the island of Capri that houses stunning blue water and echoes music. I’m mortally afraid of water, so the dinky speed boat on the choppy sea, coupled with my superstition about the black bird; had me petrified. Fortunately, we survived the boat ride and reached the train station at Naples, without incident.

While checking the timings for our train, my husband received a call from his cousin. His beloved paternal grandmother had passed away. Maji, as we all knew her, was the head of our family; and she was especially dear to my husband. Days before, she had telephoned us in Italy, imploring us to return early. Perhaps she had sensed that she didn’t have much time in hand. Her sudden death came as a shock, with the grief magnified because we weren’t with her when she passed.

The only time I’ve seen my rock of a husband shed a tear, was in the train station at Naples. He was unable to express the depth of his grief but I sensed it. Maji had been a mother-figure to him, and had become one for me too, despite the short period of time I knew her. I dedicate this post to that phenomenal lady and to all my amazing grandparents, who left such a strong imprint in our lives, and whose legacy lives on through their children and grandchildren.

After this incident, I lost both my beloved grandfathers, my darling Nanaji leaving us only last year. Thankfully though I never saw any more apparitions of birds on walls 😉

Come back tomorrow for the letter O and another story!


Eating the best pizza we’ve ever had at ‘Da Michele’ in Naples, June 2014


Exploring the sights and sounds of Naples, Italy


welcome little one! (4)

Book a stay in Naples by clicking here.

*Unless specified, the copyright in all pictures belongs to nooranandchawla. 

**This is not a sponsored post, but it contains an affiliate link. If you book a stay using my link, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

A for AmritsarB for BhopalC for CambodiaD for Delhi,  E for England, F for France, G for Gwalior, H for Hemkund Sahib, I for Italy, J for Jim Corbett National Park, K for Kamakhya Devi Temple, L for London, M for Munich


  1. Sorry to know about your loss, generally i try my level best to not to remember that coz i have faced the same loss few years earlier and i cant explain how much she used to love me.
    That imagination of black bird was probably a sign,it is said “there are more things in heaven…”.

    1. Oh Jyotirmoy, the love of grandparents is unexplainable.. I’m sorry my post made you remember the sadness.
      Yes the bird could’ve been a sign..
      Thank you for always leaving a supportive comment.

      1. Sorry for your loss Noor. Though a loss is always sad but sudden deaths are always shocking and traumatic for the near n dear ones.

  2. Sorry for your loss. Loss of a loved one is difficult especially when you are not near them. I am enjoying ready your stories if your memories through this travel series.

  3. As is customary we all will leave memories around and be part of something else, I am sure your grandparents left with a heart full of content and a satisfied soul. It was a very personal gesture for you to share and dedicate to your elders, shows your deep rooted values and love for family. God bless you all!

  4. Hugs to you Noor. I lost both my paternal grandparents quite early on in life and now my maternal grandparents are also no more. But what I feel really sad about is that my son never got to know his maternal grandmother. The boy will grow up without an important figure in his life. All that he knows about my Ma is through my stories now. This touched a chord for the connection.

  5. I know this happened almost 5 years ago, but I am sorry for your loss. I am a big believer of signs and I would say the bird was one.

  6. Oh!!! It was a great loss. I lost my maternal grandmother very soon even I don’t remember her face properly but I miss her till now because I feel maternal grandmother’s love is incomparable.

  7. I don’t know what to say. Loss of any relationship causes a deep void in ones life. Specially grandparents who shower immense love on their grandkids are missed most. A big hug to you.

  8. I am so sorry for your loss, Noor. Grandparents hold a very special place in our life, all that extra pampering & love they showered on us, each minute spent in their loving company, all the beautiful memories we made, I wish I could go back to that time. It would’ve been a very difficult time for both of you to hear such a devastating news.

  9. Sorry to hear something negative in your beautiful post. I can understand the pain it causes to one, but you hae made a beautiful attempt by dedicating this post to her. I always admire your hidden emotions and thoughts behind your every presentation. I recently lost my Nanimaa, I was very much attached to her.

  10. Nice photo of Naples. I am sorry Pizza in Italy stands not chance compared to what we get in Delhi. Where is the spice? Sorry to hear your loss while on holiday. Good and bad, life comes in mixes.

  11. The pampering of grandparents knew no bounds, they can override the rules made by parents and no one can say a thing. Sorry to hear about you loss.
    Naples is a place where pizza was invented, how different was it from our regular pizza?

    1. Thank you for your kind words..
      The Napolitan pizza is just too delicious for words- freshest ingredients that burst in your mouth, with the crunchiest pizza base and melt in your mouth Italian cheese- yum!

  12. It’s a bitter truth to accept that our grandparents and even parents will age one day and leave us alone. As a mother of two kids I have got that feeling that how slowly we are graduating up to take the positions of our elders. life is such a vicious life, isn’t?

  13. Hmm maybe the hallunication was a sign for you. Well that experience actually reminded me of my hallucinations and sleep paralysis episodes. 😅

  14. I am so sorry about your loss and I could understand how hard it must for both of you to handle your emotions when you were so far. you write so well and narrate everything so perfect. it is really great to get connected with you with this challenege.

  15. You had these dark premonitions. Not everyone has these feelings, only very intuitive and sensitive people do. I was 9 when my paternal grandmother passed away yet I have such wonderful memories of her and I missed having other grandparents altogether. Poignant post Noor.

  16. You kept me gripped till the end dear. It would have been difficult to have those premonition and then loose two dear ones

  17. Loosing loved ones is so painful and I am really sorry to hear this must be tough time but I’m sure they all are blessing you today and always

  18. I am so sorry for your loss! All I can say is I try to remember the wonderful times spent with my grand parents. I never saw my grandfather hence whatever time i got with others I still cherish it.
    #ContemplationOfaJoker #Jokerophilia

  19. Oh it must be terrible to get such news while on your honeymoon. But life, as they say, goes on. It’s a blessing to have such doting grandparents. Their blessings continue even when they are gone.

  20. Grandmothers and grandfathers are always choos to us. I grew up only only with my maternal grandmother as the other 3 expired before me. I have so many fond memories with my nani

  21. Your write up got me emotional dear. It’s such a beautiful way to express your love and gratitude for your grandparents. I am sure their blessings will always be with you.

  22. Events and especially tragic ones are often preceded by signs or omens. A restless mind and sleeplessness too mean that some bad news is on the way. I guess that was what was happening prior to your heading to Naples. It is indeed so sad to receive such news when you are far away from your family.

  23. Extremely sorry for your loss. Often the toughest men break down when such an emotional turmoil rises up. Hope both of you are doing good.
    Nevertheless, i’m loving your A-Z posts 🙂

  24. Very sorry for your loss. Often loss of near and dear ones approaches with some signs. We may not believe it but we can’t deny premonition.

  25. That is really sad… I remember the post where you mentioned waking up at 3 every morning! This really frightens me… The bird and apparitions! Grandparents are really a huge part of life!

  26. First of all, extremely sorry for the loss you had. Grandparent undoubtedly are a very important part of an individuals life plus the way you have written down the whole scenario is damn touchy!

  27. You are one blessed soul to experience the love and blessings of your grand parents. I never had this opportunity. reading about this post I can feel the same pain.

  28. Sorry for your loss. Sometimes we just knew that something gonna happen and when it happens, the saddest part is we cannot do anything about it. It just suppose to happen. I can feel the pain that your husband and you were going through on that time. I myself is very close to my grandma, and something like just happened with me also😣😓. It feels good after sharing such emotions to some one. Obviously you must had some great memories also..

  29. Indeed a sad news! Grandparents are so precious and losing them is like losing yourselves. When these kind of things happen, can’t help but believe in superstitions.

  30. Sorry for your loss Noor, but these gut feeling thing is true, even I had such incident where I felt something wrong going to happen and soon some bad new hit me, but life is about postivity, and beautiful picture

  31. Premonition right. I too had many a times intuitively known about something good and usually bad is going to happen.

    The loss of grandparents is irreplacable. Sorry for your loss.

      1. Really sad for your loss Noor. Deeply moves me but such is life…full of pain . It is so difficult to lose your own. The one thing that is in your control is to move on with a smile.

  32. Such news of sudden death surely effect a lot, specially when we are far away and can’t be near them. I am sure she would be happy in Heaven with God.

  33. I lost both my grandfathers even before I was a toddler. Naniji and Dadiji passed away after long illnesses few years ago. I feel sad that I never could get the grandparent-love that people are fortunate enough to experience. I’m sure they look down on us with happiness for our love and respect for them.

  34. Had a similar intuition before a travel. I could not sleep the full night and the next day my entire family was travelling to native place and one of them met with a bad accident enroute, Thank God nothing bad happened. I am so scared so such intuitions.

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