‘I want to remember how good this feels,’ I said to myself out loud, wading into the sea with my arms splashing clear blue water up the skies, laughing, finding myself in the most exquisite of states: contentedness. ‘This. This is the feeling I’ve been chasing.’
I let out a silent prayer of thanks, turning my face up to the low summer sun that was beginning its evening hiding practice behind the terracotta houses of the coast.
I was in Sicily, drunk on a little too much sun and a whole lotta love. My housemates, the ones I live with in London, had flown out to pass my final days in Italy with me, and together we’d taken Palermo by storm. From 4 a.m. piazza drinking and flirting with the locals, to trips to Europe’s largest theatre to see beautiful ballet and glimpse a piece of history; from backstreet markets and seaside seafood restaurants to prosecco by the bottle and pasta by the greedy forkful, I was suddenly sharing a slice of the country that made me with two of the people who’d made me. Two parts of what has mostly been kept very separate indeed – my “London Life” and my “Italy life” -- were colliding in a magnificent, beautiful way, and in many senses that’s what my two months away has done for me. It has brought together parts of a puzzle to make them a whole picture. My personal history met my current reality; the Laura who wears a backpack and no watch has met with the Laura who keeps a strict schedule and worries about bedtime and If This Is The Right Career Move and What It All Means.