Once just a geographic term for me, and now I have been here. The adventure and experience that I had during the week is dramatic and the impact on me is huge. I am still swimming in the volume of pictures I have taken and can barely begin to re-organize myself and let out what I have taken in.
Prior to my trip, I have known of the elevation, the cliff, and the scary busing adventure. I had a good share of nightmares that I either fell on the cliff or I was shaken out of the bus and went straight down to the ocean…
The reality was, that my fear was still there, but not as drastic as what I had envisioned. We are truly blessed with absolutely wonderful weather and are able to complete our journey without hassles. Most of all, God has removed my fear and affirmed to me that with His Presence, I shall not fear or fret.
The scenery at the Amalfi coast is more dramatic than in Tuscany and the varieties are better for photography. The beauty in Tuscany is natural, peaceful, and comforting while Amalfi Coast forces you to breathe harder and desire bigger. The Mediterranean blue water is screaming at you wherever you go and it provides the most gorgeous backdrop for the landscape. Everywhere you go, you see the blue. Wherever you stop, you are looking down at the water. In the beginning, I could feel the tremble on my feet, but it got better every day.
Italy’s intricate architecture is undoubtedly enriched by its impressive history. To me, the residential houses are particularly charming in respect of their appearance and how they were built – one next to the other and one on top of the other. It is surely not built under a building ordinance or regulation code. They seemed to be established by people’s imminent needs and simultaneous inspirations throughout the centuries. Every house has an appeal of its own and they are all so closely attached to each other.
I was intrigued by the layers of winding streets. On one street, you can start to walk uphill, and halfway, the road goes down. If you don’t want to walk down the street to compete with the hectic traffic, you can choose to use stairs and walk up and down hundreds of steps. Once you use the steps, you are set in a maze. Pray for good luck that you are not confused by the twisting and turning stairs. One wrong turn can get you to walk another hundred steps before you can find your way out. If you are tired, it is quite frustrating to get lost. But if you are fresh in the morning and in for the adventure, it is lots of fun to get lost and get back on track again.
The sun was just down for a couple of hours on that day. I was up at Cimbrone Garden looking down, I meant, straight down. I found my stiff legs were gravitated to the ground, moving very slowly, one step at a time. The heavy stone fence gives me an assurance that I would not fall through the gaps, but it still took me a while to come close to the fence for a quick snap.
Wonder if you have heard of Tiberius Leap. Tiberius Cesar is the second emperor of Rome. He was in power when Jesus was crucified. We visited the remnants of his palace, Villa Jovis in Capri. I enjoyed Italy’s history but not architectural relics, particularly these emperor’s palaces where brutal and inhuman events had taken place. Tiberius had infamous acts that he dropped his young conquests to this 1000-foot cliff to death for his own pleasure. I wanted to check out this place to measure how far I can push myself to overcome my fear of height. I did finally make it to the edge of the railing, but I could not take a clear picture when my hands and feet refused to coordinate.
I am removing Tuscany and Amalfi Coast from my bucket list, but it does not mean that I won’t go back. I am so happy that I finally made myself a tourist (not a businesswoman) in Italy. There is a reason why Italy is such a popular tourist destination and like Hawaii, people do not just go there once, they go regularly. It is that unbeatable and irresistible Italian charm that captured your heart time after time.