So, I'm in the middle of having a little date night with myself - got a Halsey mix on Spotify, just made a little apertivi/dinner plate of spinach, lentil penne, roasted tomatoes...and some aged goat cheese and red vino. I went to the gym earlier, took a shower, did an at-home microdermabrasion, and indulged in my favorite charcoal mask. It's been heavenly, albeit a bit quiet. So, since I have all of this free time, I wanted to share something I've been meaning to post...a little Italy re-edit. This time, I'm sharing a piece of my memory that only exists in my Italy journal, and no where else - a lovely beach day at Follonica. Follonica is a beach in Grossetto, Tuscany. It was such a sublime, local-feel sort of day. A hot day in late May. A girls' trip of relaxing, sunning, and gallivanting. So, it's pretty much a perfect story to tell as I revel in my quiet girls' night at home.


We caught the Siena Rapido bus early in the morning after a night of heavy...well, gallivanting. And the fun continued the next day, just a little differently. There's a certain feeling of going to a new place, in the safe confines of a good group, with anticipation and expectations. I remember the rolling hills of Tuscany dancing by as we sped past along the autostrada, wondering how the seaside could be so close to such charismatic peaks and valleys.


Arriving in Follonica, we found a spot on the beach surrounded by real Italians - locals - and somehow fitting in just fine. I remember it as a quiet beach, hearing snippets of beautiful Italian conversation wafting through the air. Catching the slightest bit of conversation gave - and still gives - me a thrill.

My skin burned. The sun beat down on my leather backpack. My towel was a sheet that I stripped off my tiny twin bed. I was unkempt, sweaty, and hot, but so happy. As the afternoon arrived, we found something for lunch - something forgettable, but I have faith that it was delicious. And we began to search for the bus back to Siena. A pack of 12 or so girls...and none of us could figure it out. I don't exactly remember how we managed to pull it off, but we found some buses, and I spoke my limited Italian to a driver who pointed us in the right direction. He told us we were in the wrong part of town - only I seemed to be able to comprehend this - and he rushed us, on his bus, past the stops along his route and dropped us off where we needed to be. Simple Italian miracles like this made me believe in the magic of this wondrous country. We almost missed our bus, but we made it - I remember feeling so quietly proud of myself, because in my eyes, I played a part in saving the day.

And we spent the night, with our sunburns, drinking vino and hanging in the Campo of Siena with all of our friends. And it was amazing.