One word pretty much sums up our 2 days in Cinque Terre - surreal.
The views out over the sea from the top of our village and along the hiking paths were like something out of a movie. An IMAX movie. In 3D. And a slight sunburn.
Being able to cool off with a dip in that same sea after the day of hiking, once you adjust to the rather frigid temperatures and salty taste.
Sampling the local cuisine in a small restaurant on a street overlooking the sea you just swam in. Eating really fresh seafood spaghetti and delicious pesto dishes. Sampling the limoncilo that had had likely been made and bottled where you drank it, made from lemons the size of your head growing in any number of "backyards".
Shutting down the local bar with some impromptu performing, much to the apparent delight of the locals in attendance that night.
The most surreal part of all of this experience? Sharing it with two great friends from New Hamburg.
(I think I should call MasterCard. Instead of the "priceless" ad campaign, how about the "surreal" ad campaign?)
Watching Todd and Danielle walk down the tunnel from the train station, Jill and I both had to remind ourselves that we're somewhere in the middle of Italy, and not Waterloo county.
I could go on and on about all the sights and tastes and people we've met in the past 2 days, but again, words won't do it justice. The pictures don't even give a good enough account. The above descriptions will have to suffice, coupled with a strong recommendation to experience this region for yourself someday if you have the chance. And if you happen to be able to experience it with friends from home, it only magnifies all the best that this part of our journey had to offer.
As we ride the rails towards the Italian capital, we leave behind our friends who will enjoy one more day of hiking and relaxing in that beautiful region. We're sad to leave them, of course, but excited to see all that Rome has to offer.
We will certainly not forget our time here... And as Graham has an open invitation to sing with Danielle at the local pub in Manarola anytime, maybe we'll all be back sometime!
Graham is far to excited about using the phrase "When in Rome... Wait a
Jill's clearly very amused.
Until the next post,