June 28, 2016
It was just a day or so ago that I left my brother and sister-in-law as they drove off to Cinque Terre. That evening I met more of our Del Fiacco relatives in Paterno. (More to come on Our Italian Family in the next blog).
The next morning, Angelosante and his son Federico took me to the station in Avezzano, carried my heavy luggage up and down the stairs and hugged and kissed me goodbye. I promised to return next year and Federico and I are going to work on our language skills. He knows English well but doesn't speak it. I understand Italian well but need to speak it better.
After more kisses and "Ciao Ciao!" They were off and so was I.
Three trains and a couple mishaps later a very warm and sweaty ME arrived in Santa Marinella in Lazio and along the sea. Wow, this sounds fantastic. I have been looking for some down time for a while.
I reserved a hotel along the beach that was supposed to be near the train station. Hotel Villa Delle Palme it is called and it IS a lovely beach hotel--but it is NOT near the station. Luckily several locals looked at the map and showed me where it was. They then called a cab, offered me water and I sat and waited 15 minutes for the cab that never came. You see, there is only one taxi in Santa Marinella. Apparently he was booked up.
So I began my downhill jaunt (thank God!) to the hotel, getting sweatier by the minute. My luggage has gained weight, I swear. Too much pasta for that luggage, or maybe for me. I was pretty cranky when I arrived at the hotel but once the Air conditioning came on I was a new woman! I actually fell asleep.
That evening after a long shower I joined others at dinner by the sea. Young couples were kissing at their tables. (This is Italy after all.) Parents with their beautiful children were hugging and generally enjoying themselves. And I began to feel odd.
At first I didn't even understand the butterflies in my stomach and a sense of sadness. The food looked fantastic and I could not have eaten in a better location. It was really romantic.
Dang!(yes we say DANG in Minnesota.), I was feeling lonely! I travel alone quite a bit and usually I am just fine. But tonight I was missing family, especially my daughter and granddaughter. And maybe I was feeling sorry for myself because there is no man in my life right now. I just had to let the feelings flow through me.
Traveling alone can have little surprises like this. You can be hit by a wave of loneliness out of nowhere. I find I just need to go with it. It helps to talk with friends or family but when they are not around I talk to myself. And suddenly I remembered that there are so many things that I have as a solo person, da sola, that maybe others do not have. I just took a month off to travel in Italy! I am planning to move here next year. There is no one else I have to win over. I do not need to work out schedules with others. I am free. Perhaps someday the right man will enter my life and we will be the old kissing couple! Perhaps I will return here with my daughter and granddaughter. Maybe my Italian cousins will join me here on the beach in Santa Marinella next year. Either way. I am ok with who I am. And I feel blessed to be able to travel the way I do, to meet new people from all over the world and to eat great ravioli alla sorrentina next to the water right here and right now.
Ciao for now!
Ciao for now!
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Ciao for Now!
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