i'm so excited to introduce you to suzanne, one of most perfect human beings god ever created. that's just my humble opinion, but you'll have a chance to get to know her and judge for yourself. i like to think that i had something to do with her brilliance, but i'm sure she had it within long before she walked into my classroom - the infamous room 3. here's a look at europe over her shoulder.
over my shoulder
before march 30th, i had never been across the atlantic ocean. amazingly, work took me to prague and rome, and vacation allowed me to stay. i spent a total of 21 days in europe. yes, i was alone. no, it was not scary. no, i do not speak any language besides english. no, it wasn’t an issue. yes, i would have loved for a family or friend to have joined me… however, i treasure my experience traveling solo and would do it again in a second. and finally, no – i wasn’t ready to come home.
as i was preparing for my vacation, i remember talking with my mom about vacation pictures when i was younger. she said you should be in the pictures to be a part of the memory you experience there – otherwise you may as well just buy postcards. this philosophy motivated many of my pictures and as a result, i would like to invite you to experience italy from over my shoulder. consider this a more interesting take on ‘selfies’ as i just can’t call it a selfie when i have the colosseum over my shoulder!
the hardest part about traveling alone is not having someone to split that bottle of wine with over dinner as you recap the day… so in conjunction with my over my shoulder pictures, i have recapped my adventures here – so I could share with everyone.
sometimes it is best to start at the end. at the end, i found myself in a little hole in the wall down a random street i got lost on earlier in the week. it looked cozy. it did not look touristy. it looked like a great place for my final meal.
i am in italy. i am on day 20 in europe. i am alone. i have had pasta at least once if not twice every day. i have had wine and cheeses and olive oil and gelato (lots of gelato)– everything that is not on my normal diet back at home.
i am having prosecco and cheese to start my meal. an older gentleman walks in and sits down at the piano in the corner and begins to play. it is beautiful.
my red wine arrives with my handmade ravioli stuffed with ricotta and spinach over a truffle sauce (this picture cannot capture the levels of amazing this was!)
a little boy (i think around 8 years old) walks up to the old man and asks if he can play everyone a song. the older man relinquishes his seat and the younger boy gets comfortable as he prepares to play something from memory. i get ready to endure a child’s song – honestly a bit upset to have the beautiful melodies end just as my food arrives.
immediately, i realize i underestimated the boy. he blows away the restaurant – everyone stops talking, eating, and drinking – everything pauses and shifts to watch and listen to this boy play. it is breathtakingly beautiful. he is more skilled and natural than the older gentleman. we clap at the end of the first song, and the older man encourages the little boy to continue. he plays several more songs – including a top 40 song.
i couldn’t have imagined a better summary and end to my trip – a perfect blend getting lost turning into a great discovery, fabulous food and wine, expectations being shattered, finding beauty in the unanticipated, discovering classics mingled in with modern, and experiencing it by myself within a crowd. that was italy for me.
join me in italy and look over my shoulder; now, let's start at the beginning. . .
over my shoulder is by a covington, georgia native who graduated from presbyterian college and ga state with a bs and ms in business economics. she's a true southern lady naming biscuits as her favorite food. she has traveled to machu picchu where she decided she wanted to see all 7 wonders. her favorite US places are sonoma, california, and alaska. next on her agenda is to make it to new zealand, australia and south america . . . or wherever she finds a wonder.