Also known as Alto Adige by the Italians, was formerly part of the Austrian Empire and then Austria-Hungary. All of this is my way of saying that it’s not very Italian. The buildings, the people, the food, etc. Of course, the Italian rail still services the area, so that part is still the same. When we arrived in Fortezza, we discovered that the rails to Valdaora were closed, so we had to wait for a bus.
Needless to say, that was really the only snag. Once we were picked up in Valdaora by the cook of the hotel, everything else was wonderful. I’m totally in love with this region of Italy. Altitude makes me energetic and I can think clearly. Plus the fact I was staying at a posh hotel with a sauna, pool and free massage . . . well, it was tough to leave. Mountains are where I ultimately need to spend most of my time. That became clear to me the second day as I strolled through town. I love wearing a jacket in July. Breathing is simply better. And the side effect is that everything else is simply better. (OK, winters on mountains are brutal, but I can always leave.)
While there, another epiphany occurred, I also love music. I mean, that sounds obvious, but really I’ve never been able to remember bands and songs I like, etc, so it always seemed to be second to literature. A distant second. But no, Nick Hornby’s 31 songs opened my eyes. He saved so many memories for me. It’s like part of my brain unlocked and all of the files of my past came pouring in. I think I may add 31 songs to my all time favorite book list. Drastic, maybe. So the whole stay there and the entire trip back was one long sound track. I’m actually working on that soundtrack now. It was a moment in my life, in the right place and with the perfect person to share it with.
Enjoy the pictures! Find your mental higher ground.