Monday, January 25, 2010

A Travel Journal: Italy

When you travel, do you keep a journal of your activities and impressions? JB and I do; usually we alternate days--one day she will document our gallivants and the next day I will. We are not strict travel-loggers though. Our journal always include every single thing that made us laugh, and of course highlights that left us either speechless or amazed or confused.
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Recently I found our travel journal from Italy. We spent a week on the Amalfi Coast about four years ago, a rare group excursion (we usually travel solo) that turned out to be fantastic. Here are our highlights in a nutshell:
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'That woman Barbara, attached at the hip. We tried to be polite but we often snuck away'
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We meet Ellen and Roberta, these two friends traveling and also from Massachusetts, and we have a ball together. We cannot stop laughing at Roberta's crush on the Englishman in the lobby. Excessive alcohol increased her passion and our reaction. We laughed until we got sick.
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The formal head waiter with the formal yellow jacket
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The pitcher of hot milk frothed for our coffee every morning
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Joan from Provincetown when she fell in Capri: she had two huge black eyes from it and tried so hard to ignore them
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Nine nurses three with spouses on the tour: they drank like there was no tomorrow.
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The leather boots in Naples that got away, but kj got some very neat Italian sneakers
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The first time ever that JB and Ms. kj had cappuccino together
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Two mimes on the streets of Naples: we couldn't stop watching them
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Only $ 28 on our final hotel tab--wow.
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kj ate three candy bars non-stop out of the mini-fridge
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We bought our Italian underwear at the grocery store!!!
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Our harrowing walk on a ribbon of a street to Minori--the Mediterranean right there beside and below us
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kj talks to a shop keeper about the Delfino's in Italy--kj's grandfather came from an area 2oo miles north of Rome
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JB only had one sweater for the whole trip: she thinks she will throw it away when they get home
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The wild dogs in Pompeii: kj kept looking at them to see if they were happy. They certainly seemed to take care of one another.
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A cooking lesson making gnocchi. kj couldn't bear to eat it afterwards because too many hands had rolled out that dough
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Eating in the same 14 seat restaurant every night: just bring us whatever you want, no need for a menu. Unbelievable food. Orgasmic.
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All those lemons and lemon groves on the side of every hill--everywhere.
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Sipping cappuccinos often and everywhere at all those outdoor cafes
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It was an awesome trip. Have you been to Italy? If you haven't and you have been told the food, people and natural beauty of the country can't be matched, believe it.
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Love

kj

40 comments:

  1. It's been so long since I travelled overseas, I can't remember. I have been briefly to the north of Italy at Majora as part of an 'alpine' trip.

    Sorry kj, not ignoring you but my keyboard is broken and I have to bang away on an old one with sticky keys. Plus I wasn't around much this weekend so I'm playing catch up today. I'd love to see the Amalfi coast, or Capri, or Provincetown . . .*scratches feet*

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  2. hells, i think you can count on seeing provincetown.... :)

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  3. Why has fear crept into my life and taken my wanderlust away?

    Look at this place. O-M-G!!!!

    One day I'll get over these niggling phobias.


    Maybe.

    xoxoxo
    Lo

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  4. lo, you would LOVE italy!! if your wanderlust and wonderful presence in provincetown is any indication, i think perhaps you may travel yet. a trip like this--to italy--well, i have to say it is worth even the fear. and the artist in you would be dancing in the streets. ♥

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  5. No, just Switzerland and France so far in Europe. But it's on my list.

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  6. I love these photos and snippets, I laughed out loud about too many hands touching the dough :-). I would have done the same thing.
    I have never had money to travel, so I have no travel journals which makes me very sad indeed. Someday I hope that my art will sell and I can go to Italy and Paris.
    xoxo

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  7. cs, you won't believe italy. so many people told me that and i didn't believe them. plus i often found italian men too forward. now, i realize (for the most part!) there is a national friendliness, kind of worry free. refreshing.

    and the food....

    annie, i hope your art flies to the land of abundance. plus there are other ways to see the world (volunteer) if needed. you are lucky to live in such a beautiful place: that makes staying put a whole lot easier, yes?

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  8. kj something about your little bullet snippets grabs hold of me and makes me so interested.

    Can you tell I don't like long winded things and mean while I am so long winded.

    This was a great post.

    Love Renee xoxo

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  9. Oh lady I use my moleskin constantly. Need a new one...next payday...for sure.

    Love ya lady xoxoxo

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  10. thank you ms. renee, my favorite moon sister, bar none. now when i write a snippet i think of you and sometimes i laugh about it. you are btw not long winded. you write to the point. in fact you are an awesome writer. ♥

    oh sonia, that makes me jubilant!! don't forget to keep the first one. i have five now and i love that they are little histories of comings and goings. do you doodle alot? would you take some pictures of some pages? i would love to see them! ♥

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  11. Oh yes, a few times and also had the great privilege and adventure of being loved by an Italian.

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  12. Every gypsy has a job and that one just happens to be yours.

    xoxox

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  13. you are part Italian and never told me??? girl!!!
    my dad was sicilian and my sister lives in rome and I lived there in college for 3 months and I know minori (bought pottery there) and have driven the Amalfi coast with my heart in my mouth a few times. Adore it, wish we still had the house in sicily and hadn't sold it to sneaky cousins.
    I just bought "rosetta stone - learn Italian" so that my family can vacation there maybe this year. A house in Tuscany for a few weeks. Little hillside towns. lovely food. laid back living - that's the way to do it.

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  14. My wife is first generation American. Her parents Italian...if all Italians are as nuts as her family is then I think I will take a pass on Italy. Oh yeah just in case the old lady happens to read this...I got the only sane one of the bunch!

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  15. Have a great day dear friend.

    xoxox

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  16. Ah, yes it is wonderful that I live in a beautiful place.
    As for volunteering, I have 4 animals and there would still be loss of work, nothing is free :-).

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  17. KJ - OF COURSE you are part Italian! Warm, wonderful, with a big heart filled with love.

    I have been to Italy a few times...and driven the Alamfi Coast twice... it is magical - as is Italy, herself. It is almost impossible to have a bad meal. (Although I , like you, don't like a myriad of hands touching my food.)

    My most memorable Italian trip was the one I made with my Mother the year before she died... she adored Italy..... we had ended a year-long argument and took this trip together. It was filled with love, laughter and many memories.
    I rarely kept a travel journal - but snapped a million photos and added comments to the albums that contain the photos. Looking at them now, I feel blessed to have done that because I know it was healing for us both.

    Ciao, Bella!

    Robin

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  18. From now on you need to read the tarot first because that would have shown you that there is no money in the wallet.

    xoxoxo

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  19. Von, Hahaha! After this trip I finally know what you mean. Oh la la!

    Renee, so that's my job? OK!!! I'm practicing

    mim, OMG! 3 weeks? YES! Jb and I want to live I maori for a couple of months. I want to write there. My father was Italian with red hair. I got to take him and my Mother to Italy and he cried from joy almost the whole time. It was a running joke....♥

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  20. I haven't been to Italy...in fact, unless you count emigrating to Canada from Germany when I was five years old...I haven't been overseas at all! At least, in my adult life.

    Italy looks beautiful, especially the Northern parts. One day...

    Our next trip will be to Scotland, Graham's birthplace. We'll be visiting relatives and searching out his old haunts. I'm really looking forward to it!

    I loved your little snippets...it's exactly how my travel journals turn out!

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  21. kj,
    here i am, puppy is in his new playpen, so i can get on here!

    catching up...it's so great to see you writing and sharing, your stories are always so captivating, like i've said, written from the heart, they are always so good.

    i love your favorite things, it's inspiring to make lists, write them down, step back and look, sigh and say yes. then sigh again.

    travel journals? do i! my favorite thing in all the world just about. yours is perfect, i love your memories, those little bits and pieces bring up so much emotion and thoughts of a place and time. do you draw or sketch in yours also? italy sounds incredible, i've not been, someday...

    oh, did you see my last journal where it got pogofied? such fun!

    xoxo lori

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  22. Hey, I normally don't leave comments but I just thought I'd let you know that this blog is great. I write too, but I can't
    write as well as you do. Here are some of my writings. If you want to look at them, if not it's ok. anyway, thanks.

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  23. I have not been to Italy (home of my ancestors) but my son has, several times. Your excursion here had brought the Amalfi Coast alive for me.

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  24. No, I've not been,,,but my son in law is Italian,,,does that count?
    Of course, he hasn't been there either,,,.
    I'm wondering just how much work it must have TAKEN for Joan to ignore 2 black eyes,,,,
    cracks me up!

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  25. No I haven't been to Italy, but I come from a long line of Italians.

    I really like what you have shared here about your trip... it's clever and fun.

    I'm enjoying getting to know you beautiful kj and all that you share.

    xx Ribbon

    PS... I've been busy away from blogland doing all things summer, but am still thinking about us all a lot of the time x

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  26. mark, all that talking over one another and all those arms waving in the air... but oh the food and energy, mark.

    annie, someday a friend is going to stay with your animals and you are going to fall into a trip to somewhere and that will be that. my prediction.... ♥

    robin, what a memory--you and your Mother. i am very happy knowing that you both healed in such a special way. robin, i love it when someone else has seen the amalfi coast--so so beautiful and so so simple. it's fun to share the 'snapshots' with you. ♥

    marion, i picture scotland to be so green and lush. to go on a 'treasure hunt' like that will be so fun and meaningful. ♥

    lori, i think i first "met" you though your journals. i only wish mine could look as great as yours. i don't draw or doodle much at all but i want to. and i can't wait to start pogofying myself! you are my inspiration, lori--the way you see the world, the way you share it. and now about ribbon's veggie heart? :) xoxoxoxo sweet friend

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  27. anonymous, thank you for stopping by. you are welcome here anytime. i visited your writing site and will do so again soon. you are a good writer, a teacher. that is its own skill, to be able to explain something, don't you think?

    hello annie! we meet outside of blogland lane! i hope you get to see the place of your ancestors someday. i did and i'll never forget it. xo

    babs, joan took quite a tumble; she was really bruised. she was so courageous because she tried to participate even though she was in pain. i have never seen black eyes like hers. i was glad to see she was so much better by the end of our trip. xoxox

    ah ribbon, i am equally enjoying getting to know you too. i'm pretty sure you are a kindred soul. i know your wheels are still turning. take your time: it will happen. ♥

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  28. What wonderful memories, and a great record of them too. I hope you both get to go back some day.

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  29. kay, i'm pretty sure i will return to italy. i see myself writing there every morning and again late afternoon or evening, and in between strolling along the plaza or beach and eating all that incredible food. kay, it is always such a pleasure to see your avatar here. ♥

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  30. That was really beautiful kj.

    xoxoo

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  31. Kj, Sounds good to me :-). ♥

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  32. Ooooh, I've seen Italy from the distance, on a tour bus many years ago. I wanted to jump off the bus! I would love to visit some day, and the Amalfi coast is at the top of my list. Thanks for taking us on this little journey with you.
    :0)
    Love you soooooo much.
    xo

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  33. Italy is great!
    Nothing matches their food!!!!
    It is my favourite cuisine (next to oriental food)
    Italy is relatively close to where I live so I have been there several times. Italy is lovely!
    travel journals are fun for later, they keep those precious moments alive

    ♥♥♥
    >M<

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  34. renee, you mean about the stars and their secrets? and how lovely the caravan is? (smooch)

    annie, are we having fun with our ♥'s. thanks to deborah at midlife poet.

    angela, love you soooooo much too. who wouldn't? i hope you see italy--really really worth the trip.

    marianne, sometimes i wonder if we will first meet where i live or where you live. we are both gallivanters, afterall. ♥

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  35. What a delightful premise for a travel journal: highlights and laughter! It sounds like it was a blissful trip. You make me miss Italy. I love the food especially. It’s so nice to connect with you!

    I’m commenting on this post as I’m a bit confused by the story above – must be part of an ongoing series or my lack sleep.

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  36. I bet we will meet in RI first......
    Wild guess...........
    Could be anywhere indeed

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  37. Tsup*!* No I've not been to Italy, but would love to see that dreamy Amalfi coastline*!*

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  38. I've never been to Italy...Portugal (lovely) and London and Cornwall (loved both, especially being able to speak the language, lol...well, sort of.

    It's those fun memories you jot down in your travelogue that you might forget in the big picture, which makes them all the more special.

    I should write a post about my travels one day...

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