Well, we finally made time for a small getaway to Italy despite how busy things have been for us this summer. We tried to go away last year, but the calendar just kept filling up with events and weddings to photograph that we forgot to leave time for ourselves. So, this year, we planned far in advance and booked off three weeks in July to take our daughter Evi to fabulous Italy. Our trip started in the south near Naples where we spent a couple of days with Sheena's relatives. The town, Castellammare di Stabia, was right beside the incredible ruins of Pompeii so we obviously stopped here as our first major sight. I won't make this into a detailed, history blog, so, if you don't know what Pompeii is, you can google it. Of all the ruins I've visited around the world, Pompeii is up at the top due to the fact that the entire city was left buried an untouched for almost 2000 years. So, it is as close as you can get to stepping in a time machine.
Up next, we made our way to Rome which is more of an outdoor museum than a massive city. Evi got her first taste of oppressive heat and unpaved sidewalks and loved it. Sheena and I soon realized that the stroller we brought was not designed for 2000 year old roads so Evi was up on her feet walking around most of the time. We took her to all the main sites, but her favorite moment was watching Yo Gabba Gabba on Sheena's iphone in the middle of the ancient Roman forum. I'm not sure if the Romans would find this funny or down right absurd. Luckily we didn't have to find out as the Colosseum was looming right over us.
Then, we continued to make our way up north and took the high speed train to Florence and the Tuscany area. If I could describe how beautiful the landscape was, I would... but I can't. That's why I prefer to take pictures and, if they could actually accurately reveal was we saw, that would be amazing... but they can't. So, it's the best we can do. Unfortunately, pictures don't expose the breeze, scents or the sunshine that blanketed the entire region. We stayed at a small farm in the country that produced wine and olive oil. It was snug to a small medieval town called San Gimignano. I think Sheena and Evi would be millionaires if they had a nickle for every time I said, "Gittin Gimiggy with it". I thought it was funny. We also drove around the area and stopped at Voltaire where I was probably the last person in the crowded town to realize that the Twilight Movie and series took place here. On the way back, I pulled the car over to snap a picture of the most random iron red circle in the middle of nowhere overlooking the landscape. I love that kind of thing and I'm sure the artist that put it there knew there would be lots of people like me that would pull over and do the same thing.
Then, it was off to Venice! I've been all over the world and Venice was always the, "I need to go there before I die" place and the city that I always put off going to as I figured I could see it later on in life when I had a wife and child. What better timing that going later on in life with my wife and child! I told Evi that it took me 34 years to get here and it took her less than 2. Evi walked the entire time we were there and absolutely loved the bridges, gondolas and narrow streets.
Then it was time to catch a plane home and end our little getaway to a remarkable country that has enough history in it to fill the entire planet. Yes, we have tons of family pictures and silly shots of us eating pizza or pretending to hold up the Leaning Tower of Pisa, but those are for us. The ones on the blog are really representative of how I saw the trip unfold, scenes reveal themselves haphazardly and amazing compositions create themselves around each corner. It is this constant state of amazement and surprise that is really how Sheena, Evi and I will always remember about Italy (well, maybe watching Yo Gabba Gabba for Evi). Ciao!