September 7, 2009

Tuscan Fields and Friendship

I have a wonderful friend who lives outside of Florence, Italy. We met when we lived in the same apartment building, the Domus Minami Azabu, in Tokyo, Japan many years ago. She is Brazilian and wonderful. We became fast friends in Tokyo and have carried our friendship forward over the years, though we may only write every few months.

A couple of years ago we met up for the first time since we parted ways in Japan. She now has a young son and a wonderful house in a small town that she and her husband used to visit when they were first married. He is from Florence and so they returned to be near his aging parents and other family and friends.

When we finally met, she made a point of sharing with me all the wonderful back roads that I had never known existed during my previous vacations in the area. Before I knew her, I had no idea that you could drive forever and never see another car our tour bus for hours. And be minutes from the city center of Florence.

My dear friend truly has inspired me to be open to exploration off the beaten path, even when returning to a favored city and region like Tuscany.

This photo I took from our car window reflects the lush area and its intense color that seems to just seep into my camera lens. Whenever I look at this photo it reminds me of our friendship and its growth over the past ten years. I feel our friendship growing and spreading across Italy to California and back.

Maybe we will continue our journey south to Brazil and her homeland. I look forward to that possibility.

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