Patrick Kiker : For The Love Of : Italy
Texas born and raised in a time before microwaves, cell phones and the internet, my world as a child was defined by the things I experienced first-hand — my school, church, and my childhood home in San Antonio.
Like a lot of Italians who spend much — if not all — of their life in the same home, my world was at arm's length. Far-away places like Italy lived in text books and seemed more fairy tale than fact.
The farthest my father traveled was Korea. My mother? Hawaii, where they honeymooned. So for us kids, traveling to the Texas Coast each summer was a treasured treat that was about as far to the end of the planet as we could fathom.
Losing my parents in their early 50s made me grow-up faster than some. So the summer I was turning 40 I thought a lot about my life and what I wanted to do more than anything. Traveling to a far and away place was something I craved, as I was tired of watching and reading from the sidelines. I wanted to experience something totally international (and by that I don't mean Epcot).
Making a shortlist of places to go wasn't easy. But in the end Italy won, and I cannot imagine choosing another place on Planet Earth because what has unfolded since is a love affair that will last far beyond life as I know it today.
While I love Texas, I'm convinced I'm a reborn Italian. The simple pleasures of life, the joy of food, family values, and the amazing vistas make my new annual vow to return to my home away from home something I cherish more than carbs.
Therein lies the inspiration for my blog — not carbs ... Italy!
My hope is to make the idea of traveling from Texas to Italy a little less daunting for those who think of international travel as something only attainable by — or for — "other people." That's my old belief.
My new belief is that we indeed can close the gap between the two beautiful lands of Texas and Italy. To help get there, I've poured many details from my Italian experiences into this site to try and motivate you to take action... rekindle fond memories from your own Italian getaway... or to simply enjoy a read by a Texan who's been to a far-away land and loves to share that joy with others. So strap on your Texas boots and let's head for the Italian boot!
My parents have been to Italy through my eyes and I hope Italy will be something you, too, experience up close and personal. That's the way it's best consumed.
"Search for the greatest things life has to offer, whatever form they take. And along the way, enjoy la dolce vita."
for the love of : italy
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