Sono a Firenze

Grateful, overwhelmed, thankful, pleased, overjoyed, awed, inspired… settled.

It is day 3.

Actually only full day number 2. Already I feel comfortable and snug in this — my — foreign town.

The Street Where I liveI realize I have only barely begun my journey here. Moments abound where I am truly IN and overcome with the exceptionality of my experience… and then the boot and I just keep stepping along stone streets enjoying the journey to our destination like normal.

A little fatigued but no jet lag.

A little misty about friends far away but no homesickness.

A little awkwardness but no fear.

New and familiar at the same time.


I have spoken before about having an immediate reaction to a city and, well, I just sorta skipped over the part where it was a question of liking it or not. Perhaps it is that I already knew I would be here for a year and I fear I am jinxing it — gratitude, gratitude, gratitude — but I simply glided into Florence and nested.

Today I go Vegan

Please before you judge and start tisking about my protein intake let us talk of diet choices.

Eat MeSustenance is the base of the hierarchy of needs. For family, for culture, and for daily life what we chose to put in our body is the basis for almost all other habits and customs. It isn’t an accident that the kitchen becomes the center of a household/party and many a vacation is centered on what and where to eat.

Nothing is more personal than food.

This is why as soon as you talk about changing your diet, all of a sudden everyone becomes a nutritionist. It ranks up there with having a baby in terms of unsolicited advice and inappropriate questions.

I was a vegetarian for years and found it easier not to say anything about it under most circumstances. Those who get it, get it. Those who don’t… well… suddenly I’m in a food-pyramid contest with pointed questions about “well where are you going to get x, y, z.?”

I’d like to think that the “concern” comes from a place of genuine care for me. But, not to put too fine a point on it, I know how to do my own research and make well-informed decisions. I’m not worried about getting my protein, iron or any other nutrient that you weren’t worried about me getting until I mentioned that it is my choice to habitually, categorically not eat something that you do.

I decided on a lifestyle outside of the traditional norm and so, as an outlier, I get (ahem) grilled.

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