Monday, 2 August 2010

My Levanto, Redux V


I am sitting at my MacBook beside my open dining room door watching a mid-summer Geneva rain gently water my thirsty coral geraniums.  A lovely breeze cools my cheeks.  I am pondering how to justify with words the beauty, peace and attachment that our fifth (yes fifth!) visit to Levanto brought us last week.

My Levanto, for that is how I feel  now.  I intimately know its' glowing colours, the smiles that greet my ernest attempts at Italian conversation, the smells of garlic and rising dough mixed with salt air, the tastes of prosecco and pesto, the crunch of the sand that inhabits every part of our apartment and which I sweep out of my bed before falling pleasantly exhausted into it every night.













Lucky us spent our beach holiday this year again with our wonderful friends Marc, Nat and their Labrador Ben.  Joining us this year were her beyond-charming parents whom we all referred to as Mamie and Papie.  J was particularly charmed by them (attached as he is to grandparents).  Their attachment was cemented when they insisted on keeping him for an evening all to themselves.  While Marc, Nat, C2 and I had an evening of Morettis and Margaritas, they had an evening of brioche con gelato for dinner followed by a dessert of gelato.  Seriously what kid wouldn't be in love?


You reveal a lot when you holiday with friends.  Either you get each other or you don't.  This week was not the easiest parenting week.  I continue to find age seven a wondrous journey down a bumpy road.  Marc and Nat don't judge, they just get on with it and love us in spite of our efforts or because of our failings.  Friends doesn't come close to covering it, Marc and Nat are the family we got to pick.


Did an amazing 3 hour hike from Levanto to Cinque Terre village #1, Monterrosso al Mare.  Absolutely stunning gnarly, hot coastal walk - unforgettable!  Particularly the self-made entrepreneur about an hour and a half into our hike who beckoned with "mineral water and organic lemons".  Translation: reused plastic cups filled with tap water and a half a lemon for 2 euros a cup.  We paid for the privilege of repeating this story in perpetuity.
























J discovered cliff jumping this year....be still my heart.  He watched with fascination teenagers climbing the large pile of hardened lava on our beach and launching themselves into space.  He immediately determined this was the thing for him.  No beach football or volleyball for my boy, nope it's extreme sports all the way.  Everyday, he ventured a little higher.  C2 kept watching that he could clear the rocks below while I covered my eyes.




8 comments:

Betsy said...

Sigh. Here I am in Burgundy, the whole of Europe within reach, but somehow, painfully, out of reach. Poor me. I keep threatening to get on a fast, Italy-bound train with my two kids but the reality of being with a four and 8 year old, sans husband, and not being able to hurl myself off a cliff like that into the beautiful water below, stops me in my tracks.

Sher said...

Good lord - where's a fainting couch when you need one?? Great picture of the cliffjumper! I hear you on the seven year old stuff - bring back the terrible twos - at least they couldn't back chat then.

Jen said...

Jeff says this is like reading about living in a fantasy world...I say it sounds so incredibly divine!

Elizabeth said...

Thank you for your kind comments on my blog! I love all your photos and am happy to see that someone is actually have a real, joyous vacation! I hope you continue to do so, and I look forward to visiting again soon --

Hannah said...

Gorgeous photos! What a fun adventure. We have a very similar shot of a guy looking out a window from our trip to Portofino, Italy last year.

DL NELSON said...

Great photos and beautiful writing. I had a mini vacation just reading the blog.

M said...

You captured the essence....I too could smell that pizza.......ah, Levanto, My Levanto. Thanks for taking me there, if only briefly....

Debra said...

Oh my goodness how brave J is and you of course for letting him experience life at his pace! We are in that phase also so thank goodness there are Dad's to watch over whilst we stand and cringe!