sea ice, wellfleet, massachusetts.

well HELLO little blog world. cape cod’s been in the news this week for this ‘once in a generation’ event – icebergs!

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so I went iceberg-hunting after work. (click any of the images to expand.)

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it took me a few attempts to find them – i started at marconi beach, then i realized the atlantic side definitely wouldn’t have any.

i still love these pictures though – cape cod national seashore makes you feel like the whole world is stretched in front of you when you’re on the cliff.

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i also saw brewster in the news for the icebergs, but by the time i reached breakwater beach it was all melted (SPRING PLEASE NOW).

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and to hint at what cape cod winter looked like last month – my little corner of the world:

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sailboats on the sound, groton, connecticut.

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Hello there, long lost WP friends! Talk about falling off the wagon there. I have a whole virtual stack of photos from traveling in Europe to still share with you, including trips to the Azores and France. I’m doing some local traveling related to the job search this month, but hopefully I can work on those posts in my downtime.

This photo was taken on a trip to Groton on Memorial Day weekend and has been waiting in the hopper ever since, poor thing. I miss summer but I’m excited about cider donuts and sweater weather, too. 🙂

Italia Part 3: Castillo & Bagno di Romagna

This is the third in a series of posts about my recent trip to Italy. Read Part 1 and Part 2!

When it comes to the city versus the country, I definitely consider myself a country mouse. I like having so much to do and try and see in the city, but I much prefer the quieter sanctuary of living with more trees than people. Preferably palm trees.

Sunday in Italy was a whole new level of country mouse though.

My friend’s family owns a farmhouse in their hometown, perched on a hill far from the downtown area. In the early morning, her dad picked out squash, zucchini, and herbs from the garden, and her mom put together a stunningly elegant lunch to bring up to the country house (shocking, I know). There’s no kitchen quite yet, so everything was cooked at the main house and carted up there. This time, lunch was prosecco (cin cin!), olives, homemade spaghetti with truffles (…once again my favorite meal in life), squash sliced into strips and cooked with herbs and zucchini, only to be followed by the actual meal of duck breast (I don’t even know how it was cooked but it was unreal). I was so. full.

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Nonno told me this was the “key to paradise,” isn’t he so adorable?

After lunch, my friend asked me if I wanted to take a walk around and see the area around the house. This was one ‘YEP’ I should have kept to myself… I was in a dress, work ballet flats, and a bathing suit, and sort of anticipated a ten minute walk at the most. Mmmm nope. I should have brought water, sunblock, and my inhaler at minimum, haha. I forgot that I had been silently praying on our drive to the house that the car could even make it uphill… thank the lord for manual transmissions. It was seriously a 50 degree gradient in some places. But it was all worth it, check our the scenery.

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Those long things growing on stalks are onions, and sunflowers grow for miles around here… in addition to the Tuscan vineyards of course.

At the top of the hill, embedded in the stone wall around the house, is a statue of Mary. We both crossed ourselves and said thank you once we got back up, haha.

NBA! haha

If you look closely you can see the handpainted NBA sign, haha.

The rest of the afternoon we spent being lazy at the neighbor’s pool. It’s a big saltwater infinity pool overlooking the rolling hills and sunflower of Castillo. I felt weird taking pictures because they don’t know me, but this is basically what I was looking at from the float. 🙂

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I couldn’t communicate well with most people there sadly, but I was able to tell them I was American. And I definitely understood when he told me that it’s okay, we can’t all be perfect. Haha

We took pictures on these stone benches on the top of a hill, and the neighbor came over to explain to me that they were actually placed there by Romans 2000 years ago, carried over from Africa. I can’t even take a sit without finding a piece of history, haha. While I was sitting there, my friend offered me a green bulb looking thing and told me to mangia. I’d never seen anything like it before, and it was a little oddly squishy. Her mom insisted I eat it too, and showed me how to tear into. I was like well. When in Rome? Literally? After one bite I said Ohhhhhhh my god. It was a fresh fig. The Italians thought it was hilarious…”haha! Americana! My got!”

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Apparently one pool was not enough for us on Sunday though! Something else on my life bucket list was visiting hot springs, and wouldn’t you know it, those Romans loved a good hot spring bath. Again, not super conducive to taking pictures but this is from their website. We closed the place down (11pm), then went into town for dinner (pizza! quattro stagione is my favorite) and walked around the town. Look at these sweet little mandala-like things lining the streets – they were all made of dried flowers and leaves.

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This should have been a two week long vacation, darn it.

jellyfish, audobon aquarium of the americas, louisiana.

jellyfish, audobon aquarium of the americas, louisiana. i'm kicking myself for not noting this species, but they were mesmerizing to watch. it wouldn't be a real vacation for me if i didn't stop in some aquarium or other i suppose. :) i didn't realize it at the time but this aquarium lost nearly all of their 10,000 fish because of the power loss and generator failures post-katrina. i can vouch for an amazing recovery effort!

jellyfish, audobon aquarium of the americas, louisiana. i’m kicking myself for not noting this species, but they were mesmerizing to watch. it wouldn’t be a real vacation for me if i didn’t stop in some aquarium or other. 🙂 i didn’t realize it at the time but this aquarium lost nearly all of their 10,000 fish because of the power loss and generator failures post-katrina. i can vouch for an amazing recovery effort!

american alligator, slidell, louisiana.

american alligator, slidell, louisiana. wouldn't be the bayou without these guys. since it was unseasonably cold, we didn't see too many gators out. they're cold blooded, so they tend to pile together in dens to keep warm until the water temperature rises. come april and may though, it's breeding season, and i don't think i'd want to be anywhere near a bull alligator in late spring.

american alligator, slidell, louisiana. wouldn’t be the bayou without these guys. since it was unseasonably cold, we didn’t see too many gators out. they’re cold blooded, so they tend to pile together in dens to keep warm until the water temperature rises. come april and may though, it’s breeding season, and i don’t think i’d want to be anywhere near a bull alligator in late spring.

honey island swamp, slidell, louisiana.

honey island swamp, slidell, louisiana. pearl river eco tours took us out on a small boat to experience life in a louisiana wetland. it was stunningly beautiful and quiet, with spanish moss hanging from the trees and glassy water. bald cypress and tupelo gum trees lined the water, and it actually smelled delicious. go figure. :)

honey island swamp, slidell, louisiana. pearl river eco tours took us out on a small boat to experience life in a louisiana wetland. it was stunningly beautiful and quiet, with spanish moss hanging from the trees and glassy water. bald cypress and tupelo gum trees lined the water, and it actually smelled delicious. (go figure.)