Well I'm awake, and I have ankles again.
Italy is a long way from Australia. Everywhere is a long way from Australia.
This is a trip that I have looked forward to for a number of years. There's something about the idea of Italy that I have always loved. And several years ago someone told me of a singing workshop they did in Sienna that was wonderful - since that moment, I was determined to do this one day.
Of course the reality never quite matches our plans.
I booked the trip early this year, at a time when I was so deeply depressed I just wanted to escape my life at any cost. I don't really know what I expected. Perhaps that having something to look forward to would be beneficial.
And I love to sing. Or I did.
I haven't actually been able to sing since January. I'm experiencing constricted breathing and pain in my sternum that makes singing impossible. Lots of fun and expensive medical tests showed nothing useful. I'm trying acupuncture now. Apparently in Chinese medicine the lungs are associated with grief and loss. Back to the depression again. Obviously the last 2 years haven't been hard enough - now I have to lose one of the tools that could help me get through it.
Ok, so I'm in Italy to do a 1 week singing workshop and I can't sing. I'll deal with that when I get to Tuscany.
I had more than a few panic attacks in the weeks leading to my departure. And I hate the way I sounded, "oh I'm off to Italy, poor me". I know how lucky I am to be able to do this. And I hate that I'm approaching it with fear and apprehension instead of excitement. I hate that I spent the whole time at Melbourne airport looking to catch a glimpse of the man who doesn't love me anymore, if he ever did.
Anyway I made it this far.
You don't see the most attractive aspects of a city from the train. Graffiti and washing hanging from small apartment balconies mainly. But I did catch glimpses - villages clinging to cliff faces, acres of vines.
It's hot here - 30 degrees yesterday as I battled timetables and luggage (hence no ankles by the time I reached the hotel). I arrived about 8pm, and after a quick shower threw myself into bed.
Shortly I'm going to head off to breakfast. Today I'm doing a tour of Pompeii - more on that later.
I can do this.