There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think of Italy. To me, Italy is the country that’s perfect for everyone: perfect for the solo traveller, for the family holiday, for those looking for adventure or those looking to relax. It’s for those in love and those trying to mend a broken heart. And after years of exploring Italy – my trip to Rome at the end of April marked my 14th time to the country – I can confidently say that the Amalfi Coast is one of the top spots to experience the best of what Italy has to offer.
With a newfound lifestyle routine, and with the desire to experience the Amalfi Coast up close and personal, the Path of the Gods was one of the best hikes I’ve ever taken in my life. A moderate hike that lasts approximately three hours depending on where you start and stop, this hike affords you some of the best views of the coast.
The last time I saw you, you were driving away from me, the taillights glowing in the dawn. The sun was just barely above the horizon; there was a still and quiet in that tiny prairie town, the trees bowing slightly in the wind. I stood at the window to watch you drive away, and I blew you a kiss.
We met in the heat of summer in the heart of the country. I instantly liked your glasses, your goofy laugh, the way we were both too nervous to eat any of the food we’d ordered. I talked too much – I always do when I’m nervous, especially on first dates – and an hour in I stopped myself, apologised for waffling.
“Don’t apologise,” you leaned in close. “I’m utterly enthralled by you, if I’m honest.”
I hadn’t had a first date that good in a long, long while. We both didn’t want the night to end; you came back to my house, where we drank beer on the porch and listened to records, the twinkly lights I’d hung up in the backyard illuminating all that was good. Our first kiss happened when we were listening to Sam Cooke, my favourite singer of all time, and life – for that one tiny moment – seemed perfect and real.
Over the past few months, I’ve been sharing my new approach to being healthy (both in body and in mind) on this blog. This particular post will probably make a lot more…
“I’m saving the Amalfi Coast for something special,” I remember saying to a friend in London, years ago. I had just returned from Cinque Terre for the third time, another part of Italy that is raved about for its beauty. The Amalfi Coast, a 50-kilometre stretch of coastline along the Mediterranean, kept eluding me despite being so high on my dream travel list. Saying I was saving if for something special made me feel slightly better about not seeing it yet.
The truth is, I didn’t know what that “something special” was going to be. “I’m saving the Amalfi Coast for something special,” became my mantra, the Amalfi Coast becoming that destination that was always in the back of my mind, that place I so desperately wanted to visit but didn’t know how.
Long-time readers of this blog will know that I struggled with eating well. Food and alcohol have been huge parts of my life, and as established in a previous post, I have always been that girl that would say yes to everything (food and drink related, at least). You could always count on me to have that shot with you, to share that pizza with you, to go for a midnight junk food run. Although my parents always made sure I had very healthy food at home, by the time I could ride a bicycle I was always off spending my babysitting money on sweets and sugary drinks. When I moved out on my own at 18, I often made extremely poor lifestyle choices, and that continued until, well, three months ago.
I didn’t like that I was out of breath after one minute of jogging. I didn’t like that I had zero muscle definition, or that my favourite clothing didn’t fit anymore. I didn’t like waking up every morning feeling tired, stiff, and cranky. I didn’t like constantly feeling unhappy for no goddamn reason. And no matter how hard I tried, I realized I was totally out of excuses; moving home to Canada meant that I had a lot more time and lot more money, so if I wasn’t going to do it now… when would I do it?
Now, exactly 71 days into this “get healthy” journey, everything has changed: my body, yes, but even more importantly, my mindset.