From Holland to Italy

Just an update of how the travel and journey goes..

Wondering in Amsterdam about how to keep learning about what I’d wish to learn about, I found a little course that would be held in Assisi, Italy, and signed up. It felt like one right thing to do.. but it’s a long way to Italy from the Netherlands, I figured it shall be another adventure again..! I stopped in Wageningen for a few days, met some wonderful people, friends still from our study times there, visited the university, was inspired by the different ways again that people live and are, over our talks and walks.. how lovely to have had this chance to re-connect there as well.

Bocholt, Germany

From Wageningen, to Bocholt and Lisa’s family; such a lovely few days with them..! Though it made me dearly miss this friend who is so far away herself and we used to spend beautiful moments together in this place. One evening now we saw a performance by a very gifted Chinese pianist Sa Chen, truly magical.. And Bocholt surprised me as the best busking spot I have experienced as of yet 🙂 Very encouraging. This visit left me with good energies for the next “leg of the journey”..!

I stopped in Basel for two nights, as it was a good day destination away from Bocholt and there was a lovely host to stay with. Playing wasn’t so fruitful, but I met some other friendly street performers, mimics and musicians, which was quite inspiring.

photo1243 photo1248 photo1253

Over the alps, and into Italy.. Met really helpful people on the way, and was dropped off in Milan, from where I took a train to Mantova. Which turned out the be an amazing spot to stop at for a few days! I never really heard of it before, and so now was just positively surprised by this small, beautiful medieval town, the historical centre of which is a UNESCO world heritage site. There I stayed with a wonderful couch surfing host with whom we explored the city, enjoyed some lovely Italian food and discussions. I played during the days, in Mantova which was fine, and tried in Verona but there the police kindly asked me to produce a permission that I didn’t have, so that city I only explored as a tourist.. visiting the house of Juliet, and being amazed by the sheer beauty of the city. In Mantova I even had the privilege of singing two little songs at the favorite Irish pub of my host; these small things are such wonderful chances to practice for me.

Switzerland provided fantastic views and friendly drivers..! But also emptied my pockets.. :)Veronaphoto1268photo1273Juliet's HouseLove notes and messages to Juliet, written by thousands...

After Mantova I stayed two days in Bologna. With my host there I got to experience sides of Bologna I might otherwise have missed: the architecture, which is impressive, and of which my host had a vast knowledge him being an architect himself and having worked on the restoration of some old sites in the city; and we also went out with some friends of his and thus I got to experience some of the vibrant student life of Bologna, the site of the very first university in the world. Such a lot of students, as it seemed! 🙂 Very alternative-kind-of scene. Lots of musicians and other buskers as well; I met two Fabios, one was a truly talented guitarist, blowing my mind away with his Spanish tunes and enchanting his listeners..

A wonderful guitarist Fabio

.. and the other was playing and singing in the corner of a pub, but it was his voice that drew me to listen and I had to stay until the end of the performance. He is a street musician but now is playing at some other venues weekly as well, and also trying his luck in a talent search show.. With that voice, I would wish him only the best of luck with these aspirations!

When having had the chance, I’ve kept researching and wondering about my future possibilities.. sending emails and applications. Started helping out an organization I wished to volunteer with, over a distance for now – nice to have some tasks of that sort to do as well. And so the days go.. In the search for things to do; and in the every day search for tranquility, being amazed by the wonders of the days. Finding the balance, as ever.. it has been rather a wonderful few weeks, giving a go to this music making, having had the chance to connect and re-connect with friends and strangers now become friends. I came to Perugia, a beautiful region of Umbria, and started this course for a week. So, now off to learn more about eco-therapy, nature connection and the mysticities, saints and sacred sites of this high-energy place, Assisi.. 🙂

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