|Spring was very definitely in the air last week...|
We decided that our Nile cruise is on--after a month of waiting the "deal" requires us to make a decision, so we did. This post isn't about Egypt though, it's about traveling and why people do it and what you can expect if you visit us in Calabria. We are going to a very famous tourist area in Egypt because we have never been there before. When you have never been to a country, you feel you must hit the "high" points. Ergo, when we first came to Italy we crammed in Venice, Florence, Cinque Terre, Siena, and Rome. We did all the usual tourist things, except we didn't go to as many museums as is probably the norm, preferring people watching. We are very glad we made that trip--you don't want to live in Italy and have to tell people you've never been to Rome--but I reflect on that trip and realize that it's just not like us to visit a whole bunch of places making them notches on the belt. What do we enjoy when we travel? It seems to boil down to what Doug said he enjoyed the most in Venice. He would get up very early (as we do) and go down to a bar to get us both some coffee. He watched the locals getting their children off to school, their stores open, and taking their coffee at the bar around him.
It's fun to go somewhere new and watch life unfold--be an observer--not someone with a stake in what unfolds. It's relaxing to watch without accountability. It's not the same as living in a place and meeting people with whom you will share accountability for how life unfolds. For this style of travel, it's best to be somewhere reasonably devoid of other tourists.
If you relate to this type of travel, you will enjoy coming to Calabria. It's part of the last of the old Italy, the way you think it is in Tuscany (but it's mostly not). There are few museums and the ones that are here are likely to be unadvertised. If you were to look up our area in the Lonely Planet, you would be told to pass it by because there is "nothing" here. Yes, I say, go ahead and pass us by. You are leaving it all to those of us who can see what is here and what it's worth.