American Girl In Rome … Part 1

I went to Rome over New Years this last year. I have wanted to go to Italy for a million years and I finally was taking the plunge. I wanted to immerse myself in one city. I like to travel by immersion and really get to know a place. I knew I would be back eventually and spend time in Tuscany and I would someday see the canals of Venice. But I don’t like to feel rushed. I wanted to just BE.

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I went there with the intention that I was going to finish my book. A long story short…I did. I wrote the final chapter and finished some lingering ones. My book was completed in Rome. For that reason alone, Rome will always have a place in my heart as the grand finale of a masterpiece I created.

And yes…I consider ANYthing we create masterpieces. My children’s stick figures are masterpieces. It doesn’t have to ever be seen or read to be a masterpiece. WE in and of ourselves are masterpieces in mind, body and spirit so therefore ANYthing we create is a masterpiece. Art is never “bad” or junk. It is beautiful and only YOU can create what you can create. Every.single.thing. you create in life is an original masterpiece. Nobody on earth will ever, has ever or can ever create exactly what you did. So be PROUD of your creations. Even if you are the only one who ever sees it. Own your masterpieces.

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Before going to Rome, I wanted to see if I could find someone who lived there to get “inside tips” from. I have no boundaries with reaching out to people because I see the janitor, homeless man, President, actor, ect … ALL on the same level. My dad exemplifies this and has raised me to be the same. We talk to everyone the same. We treat everyone the same. And to that accord we just TALK to everyone. All the time. We have the power to make a difference in someone’s day by a smile or quick talk. My dad will literally become best friends with the butcher by the time he is done preparing his steaks. I love this quality about my dad. It is the one I will always remember most fondly of him I believe. TALK TO EVERYONE.

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So I started researching on Instagram which is my favorite social media outlet. I had just got done watching Sex and the City. The final episode was called American Girl in Paris. So I decided why not search the hashtag “American Girl in Rome”…HA! But guess what? A bunch of girls came up! I found a yoga teacher and reached out to her. She told me of a studio and I ended up practicing there while I was in Rome. And then I came across a beautiful brunette woman who is an ex-pat married to a Roman. I of course did what every normal person does and stalked her down to find out if she seemed “legit” and not a scary murderer. And it turns out she seemed pretty amazing, FUN, and definitely not the killer type … So I wrote her. She wrote me back pretty quickly and we had a laugh over the way I found her through the hashtags. We exchanged contact information and agreed to meet up when I arrived in Rome. I was also happy because I had a contact as an “in case something disastrous happened” which could very well happen as a single woman traveling alone…but that fear has never stopped me. Mostly because I believe in the good of humanity and people genuinely want to help and love. I am not naive on any mean. I have been threatened to be thrown in an African prison by men with machine guns. I am NOT naive. I just believe in HUMANITY. And there is a big difference.

Anyways, I got to Rome and settled in. We made plans to meet up at the yoga studio, take a class and then grab some food. Because when you are in Rome…you EAT. Basically that is more important than breathing!

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I knew when I saw her I was in love. Like friendship love. I feel that with certain people in life and she was one. I was SO excited and we clicked immediately. After yoga we wandered the streets of Rome and chatted about life and love and dreams and fears and hopes and our backstories. I freaking LOVE when you can just relate to people and be open and have REAL conversations off the bat. That is also rare but when both people are in an open heart-space it can and does happen. Needless to say, we bonded pretty quickly and had a blast exploring the Eternal City. We spend New Years Eve together drinking wine and laughing with our group. We both were dying over the fireworks … Rome holds NOTHING back with fireworks and I swear I thought the city was being bombed. People just toss what sounded like grenades off of their balconies! On my last night in Rome, her and her husband had me over for homemade sushi. It was one of my favorites nights indulging in a delicious bottle of red wine, great music and fantastic chilled out conversation and company. When someone opens their home to you, I think it is very intimate and special. I fell in love with her and her husband and knew it wasn’t the last time I would see them.

*I will do another post on Rome soon because I have more amazing stories like the above to share!

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Flash Forward.

On Friday morning, we had a coffee and FaceTime date. I am a very early riser so it works for the time difference to be able to chat and catch up. FaceTime is such a beautiful piece of technology because it brings people together from around the world. It makes distance seem short. It makes time seem irrelevant. I think technology and social media are the greatest creations. It truly brings people together.

As we were chatting we caught up on life. We talked about our projects and work. Our dreams and coming adventures. Here is the main point of this entire post….

It is absolutely a BEAUTIFUL thing when women can come together. Openhearted. Vulnerably. And share their dreams, ambitions, hopes and fears together.

And we have that.

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And we talked about how rare it is BUT how it needs to become the new normal. We gave each other ideas and just listened at times. We plotted a few things together and tossed some great big ideas into the Universe. I think when one person tosses dreams into the Universe it is bound to transpire but when two people collectively do … The Universe goes into hyperdrive to manifest in the way and time it is supposed to be.

I got off the call so thankful for the fact that I have someone I can talk through my ideas with. My dreams. And not feel stupid or put down but rather have someone vested in thinking through and adding ideas and perspectives. And from another female with nothing but LOVE and we would want nothing more than to see each other be entirely successful in life, love and EVERYthing.

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So bringing this back down…Here are a few takeaways…

  1. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people. People aren’t scary. MOST people are really amazing people. Humans CRAVE connection. Don’t take it personally if they don’t answer and don’t let it discourage you from reaching out again or to someone else. There are literally billions of people on this earth. You have no idea that your lifelong best friend isn’t currently working for a company in China! Talk to people. Everyone. Open yourself to the world and the world will open itself to you.
  2. Find and CHERISH those fierce lady friends. The ones who you can get down to the REAL talk with. Who have nothing but support and encouragement for you and your life. Who push you to be a better person and help you figure out what the hell that even means! We NEED women friendships. As women I think it is vital. I know it is. Yes our spouses and lovers can do a lot and MOST for us (and should!!!) but when it gets to an intimate level … we just GET each other. And there is a movement now. It is visible. It is rising. Women are becoming larger power players in the world on every level. Creating. Rising. We NEED each other to keep this momentum. It truly is TIME TO RISE.

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One comment

  1. Robin says:

    OMG. Going to Rome to work on a book sounds amazing!! For me, I always held Paris as this beacon of creative spirit that I would love to write in. And now I’m drawn to Celtic areas, which figure into my book. Hopefully one day I can get there and have a short writing retreat. 🙂

    Have you ever read Anthony Doerr’s Four Seasons in Rome? He’s an amazing Boise writer and in this book wrote about writing in Rome. Might be fun for you to check out, if you haven’t read it. 🙂

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