God sometimes gives us unexpected gifts. Our gift has been a grandson who enlivens our lives and makes retirement very different than the one we anticipated. He is a special joy. And that's "Casey." In 2006 we fulfilled our dream of living in Italy for a year. It was every bit as wonderful as anticipated. This blog begins in 2005 as we prepared for that experience. Since then we have explored many places together. That's the "Travel." And finally, I am a person of opinions--spiritually, politically, on just about anything and that's the "Other Stuff." Welcome to my blog.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Italy on the Horizon

Two years ago all waking hours and night time dreams were consumed with preparations for our big adventure--the moment when we would finally step off into our fantasy year. Italy beckoned.

Ken and I are quite ordinary people with ordinary lives--with the exception that simple risk and the not-too-blurred unknown pose challenges wanting to be fulfilled. In life, there are so many "if onlys" ready to become so much more--waiting for a step to be taken. Most often all that is required is that moment of decision--a moment that seems to materialize from nowhere when the thought that has seemed so impossible suddenly loses its shackles and the primary obstacle is recognized as complacency.

Much of our journey toward that day when we stepped on the plane with 490 lbs of "stuff" in the hold was documented at the inception* of this blog--it is how this journal began. The impetus behind it was to journal the journey so that Casey would have a record in the future. The web seems like a time capsule that holds the past for the future.

Words become a way to crystallize experience and thoughts, saving them for the future. As we began to live our life in Italy, each day was a marvel of sensations and flavors. So, the blog then became the means of making the ethereal real. At the end of a day or a week, I would try to capsulize the wonders of wandering and learning to sense the soul of an old-country with a soulful history.

Now Italy is a part of who we are--common sense says a small part but our hearts make it much more. We were there not needing to make a living; we were outsiders allowed in; we could enjoy and live a fantastic dream without involvement. In many ways it was a year of escape. It was quite wonderful.

Now two months from today we will step back on Italian soil for two months--this time it will be a time when we can see the end from the beginning. It will be different. It won't be the same. But, we will be among friends, once more traveling the roads that lead somewhere, looking for undisturbed places, stumbling on quiet trattories not found in Fodor's and Frommer's or even Carla Capalblo. We will see the castle on the hill and the farmhouse across the way. Casey will run for Bruno's hug and slice of bread. The gelato ladies will know we're back. I'll use my COOP card. We will see our little man again, waving each time we pass him along the Greve River. We will be going home for a short while. We can't wait. There is not a day that passes that one of us doesn't bring it up--Casey leading the way.

So, Greve friends--we're almost there..............Ce Vediamo!



Jerry said...

It will be such a wonderful feeling to return. I wonder if it will feel like 'home' again. I look forward to reading more about your advantures.

Anonymous said...

...and I can't wait to read about it ;)

Anonymous said...

I can hear the excitement from you and KC in his blog about your trip to Italy.
There are just a few places in the world that we are continually drawn back to and one of them is Italy.
I'll look forward to the posts and photos of your summer trip.
I will be visiting some of the same areas in the fall and am looking forward to going back.

Jane said...

Chairo, I so wish we were going to be there at the same time. It would be fun to do some things together, wouldn't it. Where will you be?

Anonymous said...

We'll be in Rome 3 nights, Siena 6 nights, Bellagio 5 nights and Milan 3 nights.
We'll visit Panzano, Castelina, Greve
when we stay in Siena.
And yes, it would be nice to go at the same time and do some things together. Maybe that will happen in the future.


Anonymous said...

I have been reading your blog now since before we moved. We arrived about when you all left. I hope in your upcoming visit our paths can cross. We are in Monte San Savino near Gargonza and the SGC to Siena. I would like to meet all of you especially Casey. You can reach me by email toreachagoal@gmail.com

Chiocciola said...

I have enjoyed your blog so much, reading it from well before you left, when you generously shared the preparations with us, through the wonderful year in Italy, to reintegration in San Diego. Looking forward to more stories, more photos, and more words of wisdom from you! I am so happy that you will be able to return this summer.

Jane said...

Erin, Jerry, Maryann, and all. Thanks for the interest and nice words. Through blogging I have met such wonderful people--You.