Welcome to my friend, Gibi’s, mountain retreat. It’s an hour hike from the town that captured my heart years ago, Saorge. If you’re hardy enough to make the climb, he’ll welcome you with a glass of homemade grape juice or wine that he toted in his backpack on one of his jaunts up the mountain.
When I arrive in a new city, I make a beeline for the nearest outdoor market. It’s a great place to check out local produce (and buy it, if I’m renting an apartment and can cook on my stay), get a quick lunch, or buy a souvenir.
My very favorite thing to do when traveling is eat foods I can’t get back home. You will never find me in a McDonalds in another country. When Max and I visited Maui, we stopped at a roadside stand selling pineapples, coconuts, and all manner of citrus. I sucked the coconut juice straight from a fresh coconut. It was heaven.
Whenever I see this photo in my slideshow, I immediately exhale and feel relaxed. It takes me back to the Italian yoga retreat I attended just outside of Lucca in Tuscany. Each evening, the 10 or so of us would walk up to this grassy spot nestled among grapevines and lay out our mats. While I tend to practice yoga with my eyes closed much of the time, I kept them open because the Tuscan hillside was simply breathtaking, particularly at sunset. This photo is a reminder to me that I don’t have to be on a mat in Tuscany…