Although I had a wonderful evening the night before, my night was a bit restless. Sometimes your heart is just heavy with “home”.
My train was to depart soon and Milena and I were STILL trying to figure out how to add each other to WHATSAP-a. She was determined. A short while back, Milena had a guest for 14 days. An older woman named Maggie (I was called Maggie more often than Paige). After 14 days of enjoying each other’s company, they stay in touch for free. With 30 minutes or so until my treno….Milena has success!
Milena’s oldest, Gaia, took a couple photos of us. I liked the one on the steps, it is the same place we took our first photo 2 years ago, but Milena was not happy. So…we took more.We said our goodbyes outside the station, sure we would see each other again. I reiterated that she, the girls, Roberto, his daughter, could come stay with us anytime. Roberto had joked that I was going to have 6 guests at Christmas. As mom said, “What a hoot that would be!”
To arrive at Monterosso today, I will be needing to change trains two times. Connections make me a bit nervous, but I’m pretty comfortable this year that whatever happens, I can figure it out.
Travel day…the train slows near stations, picks up speed through open areas. The sounds created by the wind entering the tunnels is creepy. I think this is where the sound people of Harry Potter movies got the idea for the ghosts and spirits.
I take note of several hillside towns I would like to visit. Some I don’t know the names so I just write what they are close to- “Hills outside Empoli” for example. Another called “M something”…that one will be easy to figure out. But one name I know is Cortona…que bella.
Next stop, La Spezia. And this time I do not make the mistake of exiting at the previous lesser La Spezia station. I do smile as I watch a couple of newbies that do. I remember two years ago being so nervous that I would board the train to Monterosso and be thrown off because I possessed the wrong ticket. This time, not so much.Exiting the treno at La Spezia, the clouds made it look like the air would be cooler…nix that.
I grab the next treno to the Cinque Terres and position myself near an exit. It is a nicer train, and many are putting their luggage in the upper areas and getting comfortable. They must not know it is a 15 minute ride.
As always the first view of the sea, as we zoom in and out of tunnels, is exciting. This is the first time I have seen the sea with dark clouds above it.
And then….I arrive. The sea-a…she eeessa not-a calm-a today-a.
I make the walk through the tunnel connecting new Monterosso with old Monterosso. I am staying at the same hotel I did last time, so no need for a mappa or asking for directions.
I check in, am given the same room as my last visit. I do not unpack, but just open the suitcase to take out a few items. With no biscotti to quell my hunger during my ride, ho fame. So I head for Smorfia Pizza…great memories there.
Ooohhh…there’s a new little shoe shop. I’ll just go in for a look. I have no room for anything new in my Ferrari.
Well, meet my new sandals. I love them! This was the last pair they had in my size (no really!) so I could not risk them going home with another. Unlike my sandals I had made for me in Capri, I am going to wear these. What use are they sitting in my closet? It is special to have something specific to a town or area. And it feels great to support local, young artisans. The oh-so-cute owner, shared a website where the sandals can also be found. I will post when I, one again, dig the card out of my treasures. Find her on facebook in the meantime. But REMEMBER…you saw them HERE first!