This year Launi and I were determined to get to Italy. With past trips its been hit or miss as we head out the door. We point ourselves towards a city and usually that's a sure bet we'll end up somewhere else. Traveling on airline flight benefits is not for sissies or those unable to adapt. The whole process is made fun by the fact that Launi loves to wander and that her motto is "the journey is the destination" We laugh ourselves silly and have a blast no matter where we are.
We landed in Rome at 8:00am Easter Sunday. We headed downtown to Vatican City and St Peters Square, Ate the most delicous pizza from a street vendor and walked in the rain until almost 10:30pm. The adventure had begun.
After a couple of marvelous days in Rome we headed north through the Umbria Region. Launi, the shutter bug and me, the forever storyteller, had a blast. While Launi clicked away pictures, I couldn't help but soak in the history and imagine the people who lived there 1500 years ago.
Since we had our own car, we took the road less traveled relying on Rick Steves and Italy Through the Back Door to guide us. Its didn't hurt that Launi spoke Italian with a fluency reserved only to someone who once lived there.
We spoke (She spoke!) to locals everywhere & we were able to make some great friends who gave us great tips & local flavor. We ate where the locals ate & really did see Italy through the backdoor.
But mostly I did nothing. I actually learned to master it... as if it were an art form in itself. ..the Art of Doing Nothing! Whether I was sitting in an outdoor cafe sipping on the most amazing hot chocolate that was literally the consistency of pudding, or drinking an Coca Cola with ice...a rarity, in front of the Pantheon, I couldn't have had a better vacation or more dear friend to go with.
Launi loves Italy & she wanted me to see it through her eyes. She wanted me to fall in love with it as she did 30 years ago. She wanted a piece of Italy to stay with me in my heart once I came home.
Well Launi...I did... I saw your Italy. I fell in love with it & yes, I too carry a piece of it in my heart...I got to experience a trip of a lifetime with my very best friend & will always feel blessed because of it.
And yes, I am ready to go again.