18 days of my Italian vacation: I’m still in love with Il Bel Paese.

Entranced by smell, taste, culture, history, beauty and magnificence of architecture and natureLove is all around me.

* Landed at Malpensa I met with my mother in law. She now lives in San Francisco and she was on vacation as well. She welcomed me at the airport with a beautiful hug, I love her!

* Milan like  NYC. After saying hello to my father in law, I took a walk to downtown, where I spotted tourists taking picture on these city bikes… it reminded me of that time in Chinatown when… (look video below)

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* Milan Cathedral, neat as I never saw it before,  galleria and a wonderful almond granita: my friend Lorenzo knows how to treat Veronica and me.

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* Sometimes it’s easier not to plan. My dearest friends were able to join me for an unexpected breakfast: Italian friendship is magic.

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* In Turin I got to know my new “nephew” Simius. We started running everywhere and we ended up in front of Mole Antonelliana.

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I almost forgot about Brooklyn-Italian gums. They belong to my childhood and, funny enough, I now live in Brooklyn.

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* With my brother we went to Barolo and we had dinner at La Torricella, in Monforte D’alba.

Tilla, friend and neighbour in NYC, is back home in Barolo for vacation. She brought her brother a red Brooklyn Industries t-shirt as a gift; I brought mine a grey one! Great minds think alike.

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* Discovering Livorno on a motorbike; Italian style! My dear friend Lorenzo is absolutely the best guide ever. We also chanted gongyo (SGI Nichiren buddhism) in front of the horizon: I still carry that moment in my heart.

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* In Marina di Carrara I’m totally obsessed with pastry from Camboli-Benito and gelato from Rosellini.

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* VivereNewYork Friends came to say hi… just unforgettable. THANK YOU!!!

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* Nothing is more beautiful than a sailing day. Last time I saw Bartolomeo, my dad’s cousin, and Fabrizia, his wife, we were in the snowy Bushwick. Here we were surrounded by white Carrara Marble.

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* On our way home, I smelled basil. Fabrizia and Bartolomeo stopped by their backyard and gave me a big bag full of basil, zucchini, tomatoes, rosemary… local and organic products on my table!

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* Morning loving time with mommy, walking on the sand… together with this little crab.

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* Luca’s grandma passed away: I feel grateful because few days before I was able to hug her and kiss her goodbye. On my way to her funeral I started reading “Buddhaland Brooklyn”. My friend Veronica was reading it as we met so she landed to me: it was part of my vacation.

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  * Coming back home, in Marina di Carrara I smiled as I noticed this flower: look at its life force!

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  * Friends came by for the weekend and it looked like time never passed… then I noticed a picture of my brother and me hung on my parents refrigerator: time passes!!! 

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* My uncle Sergio celebrated 92 y.o. We partied all night long and, before leaving, he turned to me and said: “I can’t wait to be 93!”. He’s the best!!!

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* I was born and raised at Bagno Luciano. It once belonged to my family. Things change. The most important thing is to keep good memories in our heart.

I can still see my grandma, nonna Bruna, smiling at the sunset after a whole day of work. She used to look at the sea and say: “From here you can see the sun disappearing behind that promontory. Its red color gets to the water, the sand, the pines, the green hills and the white mountains. This is the most beautiful place in the world”. (She never traveled).

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* Francesca, another friend from NY was in Italy as well, so my dad (geologist) took us to Marble Mine.

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After our mine tour we got to the top of the mountain by jeep, thanks to Marble Tour. The view was breathtaking. Can you see the ocean?

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Of course we also had to taste lardo di Colonnata 🙂IMG_1965

Saluto così il #mare, il #marmo, l’#amore di cui mi hanno circondata #famiglia e #amici (@magnanite) durante queste…

Posted by VIVERE New York on Wednesday, July 29, 2015

* Before getting back to NYC I planned a day at Expo 2015 (I will write a specific post about it). I couldn’t do it without Valigia a due Piazze‘s tips. Still, I wasn’t able to see it all in a day…

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* My last day by Vespa. My dear friend Adriano took me home, my luggage got to be on board too. Our friends Veronica and Manuela followed us to be sure we could balance… they were really skeptical!

I’ll take everything and everyone in my heart. Forever. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!

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