Yesterday Beau, Harry and I took a long hike along the Mediterranean Sea. Jasmine and lemon scented the air, cactus clung to the cliffs, and the bright hues of aquamarine, emerald, and green stretched out into the void.
The only way to get to the Cinque Terre is by boat or walking because they recently had a horrific flood and storm. The walking trail through 3 of the towns is currently inoperable. (edit: the train is now working to get to Vernazza!) We did the treacherous hike between Monterosso and Vernazza through lemon groves and over waterfalls and alongside steep cliffs. It was absolutely and insanely breathtaking. LITERALLY breathtaking. When we came to a spot where a dynamic Italian lemon tree farmer had set up a cute makeshift lemonade stand I was perfectly willing to give him 2 euros for a tiny glass of fresh lemonade! And Beau, of course, bought some limoncello.
I was laughing because there were people on the trail who had hiking boots and all the gear and were sweating and huffing and puffing and Mr. Pacific North West mountain climber Beau was strolling along with a baby….and all he’d had to drink that day was a cappuccino and limoncello!
The lemon farmer asked us where we were from. We said, “America.” He said, “No…where you from originale?” America. “No,” he said, “I think maybe France.” This isn’t the first time this has happened! For some reason Mediterraneans seem to think we are French and don’t know it. Someone argued with us about it in Greece, too :)
My favorite thing about these towns was the colors. Blush pink and lemon yellow and soft orange and terra cotta red! It was so charming. The streets glowed with rosy hues. I got a rose gelato that matched all our surroundings. It was so fresh. Not the rose you get in the states that tastes like perfume. It was like smelling the hint of roses on the air in a garden. And it still had a few rose seeds and bits of petal!
I specifically wore my blue and white striped shirt so I would match, too. I packed it with the Cinque Terre in mind!
The hike wore me out almost to oblivion, so I after we had a bite we bought a boat ride ticket back. I told Beau I didn’t care what it cost…and guess what? It was 5 euros to walk the trail, and 3 euros for the boat! Belissima! And we caught the very last boat out. Phew!