Cinque Terre (October, 2015)
In my last post, I talked about my worst mistake in 2015. In this post, I want to bring back some “positive vibes”. So here’s my best moment in 2015 (travel related).
When I look back at my three months away, there are tons of moments or decisions that really stick out as the best of the trip. Listening to live music in San Marco square, having the perfect pint of Guinness, and falling into the water at Quinta da Regaleira; these are all examples of my favourite moments. And there are many more.
However, one moment stands out above all others, and it set off a chain reaction of moments that really boosted my confidence in travelling alone. The moment that really started it all was during my first photograph of Vernazza, after hiking there from Monterosso. It’s just a plain picture taken with a Canon point-and-shoot camera, but this picture is the exact moment where I said to myself “this feels right”:
Vernazza, Cinque Terre
I was nearing two weeks into my trip, and boy was I sick. I don’t know what it was, but I wanted to curl up into a ball. That changed when I got to Monterosso, and began my hike towards Vernazza the next morning. It was a warm day, my medicine wasn’t kicking in, and my legs burned as I patiently waited for those in front of me to ascend into the hills of the wineries.
The picture above came about 40-50 minutes in to the “hike”, where hikers are greeted with their first great vantage point of Vernazza, the most photographed town of the Cinque Terre. I patiently waited for everyone to begin their descent towards town. This way I had about 5 minutes of an uninterrupted view of the town before taking my shot.
It was the perfect moment. I was looking at the town that I had begun planning for almost 2 years in advance. And even though I watched all the travel shows I could, read all of the blogs I could, and scrolled through tons of pictures of this place, it was even more beautiful in person. It was the moment where everything came together. I wasn’t in a busy city. I had no train to catch. I had nobody to see. I had all the time in the world and felt no pressure to do anything. It was perfect. It was the moment where I really felt comfortable travelling alone. And it’s the kind of moment that eats away at me as I look towards my next destination.
Shortly after that, I found myself sitting in the harbour of Vernazza, in the middle of the day. The short one hour hike was about as much as my body could handle (it was sad). And I sat there for 2 hours. Hundreds of people rushed in, snapped their pictures, and ran back to their train or boat. Not me. I was in my own little paradise.