150 days later I am almost ready to leave Italy. This extended stay has let me appreciate the difference between travelling and being a tourist. A tourist is always thinking of the next destination. A traveller gets to do unique things as a local with locals and such things I have done in abundance.
I was asked today what I really thought of Italy after my sizable debacle. For me, Italy has always been a polarising place. Quite simply things are Fiat or Ferrari, there is no middle ground. Everything takes time but there is something powerful about letting things run their course and not hurrying in this day and age. Family and Friends come before anything and if you are lucky to be adopted and befriended as I have there is always hope. I really should have learned more Italiano here but learning Italian in my circumstance would have been a capitulation, that being said I have expanded my vocabulary and shall be peppering my conversation with molto gusto Italiano in futuro.
I had a typically long lunch with Friends and adopted Family today, our lunch went so long the serving Staff and Chef had left long before we departed. We walked a steep cobbled path down through the hills after and babbled as friends do. We congregated in the town square and I felt very European and not so alien. I fought some tears as I said goodbye to some very special people. I will fight some more tomorrow but it is time to go home.
Ciao Italia. I have fallen in love with you again xx.
Most of you. Some of you are both Fiats and Ferraris simultaneously. I guess that is twice as loved.