My tears aren’t awake yet. Those words were the final sentence of a short Facebook status update I posted at 5:30 a.m. from Rome’s Fiumicino Airport as I prepared to return to the United States after a fabulous nine days in Italy. It was time to say arrivederci to Italy. It was also too early to cry.
Chastity Whitaker, a fabulous creative writer whose skills I seriously envy, recommended that I use “my tears aren’t awake yet” in the first paragraph of my next story because she loved the sentence so much. What an honor coming from someone who knows how to turn a phrase like she does.
Therefore, in tribute to Chastity, I began this blog post with those five words.
It’s been 14 hours since I wrote “my tears aren’t awake yet” and I’m writing on the airplane. Four more hours to go on my flight from Istanbul to San Francisco International Airport. I normally love returning home to Napa, but not this time. Even though I always say that “Napa is the new Italy” and will make that the title of one of my forthcoming books, this time I’m sad to return – because being in Napa means that I am no longer in Italy.
While my vacation was not one of those knock-your-socks off vacations that I had to Italy in 2001 or to Croatia in 2006 (yes, both times gorgeous men were involved), this trip was more a time for me to reflect on the 15 months I spent in Positano. (I moved there after a year in Florence). I needed to look back in order to move forward. It’s been nearly two years since I worked on my “Bellini for One” manuscript. Although I did my first (and only) reading for “Bellini for One” while I worked at Haute Living, I stopped working on the manuscript after I started at the magazine. I simply had no brain cells left to write for myself after churning out a sweatshop amount of words weekly for the luxury lifestyle brand’s biweekly magazine and website.
Six months after walking away from that job to become Director of Communications at Alpha Omega, I am inspired to write once again. Grazie mille Italy.
Here’s a look back at those glorious several days in my adopted country.