Arrivederci, Milano.

The “last hurrah Italian road trip” is over and we are back in Milan. Our suitcases seem to be multiplying, our patience is thin. The kids have been asking daily for exactly 24 days how many days it is until we fly to Idaho?

We’ve been to France, Tuscany and Umbria the last few weeks and it’s been quite a trip! I can’t wait to tell you about it when I catch my breath. We’ve also been living out of suitcases since June 17th when the movers packed up our house and so you can imagine the state of our hotel room where we’ve been spending our last few nights in Milan. It is CRAZYTOWN!

 

Tomorrow we fly. The bags are packed, the last minute purchases squeezed into already overstuffed bags. It’s time to say Arrivederci to Milano, and I have to tell you I have such mixed emotions about the whole thing. It’s surreal.

We are so ready to be done with the move and the travel and the never ending list of details to wrap up and have some new normal, whatever that may look like.

But I am not ready to say goodbye to Italy. I love it here. It will be weird + wonderful moving back to my house. I expect the next many months will be a continued roller coaster of emotions as we figure out what’s next and how we fit into it all. Honestly I don’t know what to expect- but I’ll let you know as I figure it out!

I always dreamed of living in Italy, but never thought it would really happen- at least not at this time in our lives. And Milan was definitely not on my radar. I dreamed of spending my days sketching in Rome. Of tiny stone villages surrounded by olive trees in Umbria. Never of chic Milan filled with boutiques and fashion shows.

But we were restless and looking for change- and so when the job in Milan came up, we dove in headfirst and found ourselves learning Italian, fighting for space on the autostrade, and trying to figure out the most efficient way of hanging our clothes out to dry. It seems like a million years ago in some ways, figuring out all those important day to day details.

These last few months have been full of other details. Doing the move in reverse is more difficult than I imagined. Figuring out what was expected for checking out of the house and how to communicate with an Italian landlord, canceling Italian utilities and getting our 2 beloved dogs from Milan to Boise safe and sound has taken much more planning and effort and hoops to jump through than seems necessary. (Ahhh, Italia!)

We were only here 2 years, but it feels like our roots have grown deep. The relationships you make when you are living away from home are different. Saying goodbye to these friends was a type of sadness that I have never experienced before. Bonded through shared disasters and glorious adventures, it’s hard to realize you will never see some of these people again. Thank goodness for social media and a shared sense of adventure, I do know I will  see some of these dear friends wherever we all land around the world.

And here we are again, saying goodbye. But this time to this place we call home. We’ve made a life here in Milan, getting to know the city- finding out there is much more than boutiques and fashion and quite honestly being surprised at how much we’ve fallen in love with Milan. It does feel like home. It also feels like I could spend 100 years here and still be discovering new things. I love that so much.

It’s the end of an era, but the beginning of a whole new chapter. It is most definitely bittersweet.

And so, darling Milano, I will be sad, but I will not say goodbye. I will say Arrivederci.

Until we meet again.

 

xo- H

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