I feel that I must put some of this down lest I forget it, but the sun is rising over the Italian Riviera and it's calling me so I'll be brief...
When I spoke of my hesitation to head north into Piedmont and then on to the french alps my hosts Elizabeth and Pierre immediately concurred and directed me into the hillside north of here for a day trip. I am, after all, running away from snowy mountains this year.
It was magical.
I followed the road out of Ventimiglia until the buildings fell away and greenhouses and terraced gardens took over the landscape. It got greener and more remote as I drove.
I came to the recommended medieval town of Dolceaqua. It was just as picturesque as promised. Although I did not have my espresso at the "the california" like Pierre suggested (there was not a free outside table), I did have one nearby looking up at the same beautiful view of the old humpback stone bridge and Doria castle. A local sweet bread was a delicious accompaniment.
I then headed on towards Islobola.
I had such strong feelings as I drove that as soon as I found a place to park I pulled out my notebook to process some of it.
I had this tender sprout of a thought...
that driving like this
on tiny back roads though little towns
makes me extraordinarily happy.
I realized I can choose to live my life in the way that I want, for me.
I can make this happen
for a couple of months out of the year.
Make space to explore beautiful places, food and people.
This could be my goal.
So the intention is out there.
Then I walked up a path, soon there were steps. Up and up and suddenly I'm at an old ruin of a church. It's a beautiful view. The hillsides are terraced. There is a small village atop the small mountain in the distance. The sun is warm and there is a bench.
I sit and actually write down that I want to remember this moment.
Just how it feels.
That it feels auspicious.
I feel as though I'm on the cusp of something.
So I'll remain open to what ever it is.
I just smile.
Church bells start ringing.
You'll have to wait for the book to read what happens next, it's too large for this small post...