During Katie's senior year at college, I gave her (as a combination 21st birthday and graduation from college present) a "semester abroad". Katie chose Italy as the place she wanted to live and study in. She did the most remarkable job of sharing her adventure with her family! We got almost daily e-mails and TONS of pictures of her life in Italy. It was almost as good as being there!
This really never was intended to be a secret. It's just that it was SO big ~ SO exciting, that I never could figure out how to talk about it on here. I got an e-mail from my daughter, this morning, in response to one that I sent her, discussing my inability to post about this most incredible thing that's about to happen to me, that said:
..."I haven't checked it yet, but in case you haven't posted: I think just blurting
out, oh yea im going to italy, is a good way to put it. Let other people ask
the questions. Its much easier to answer questions about whats going on and
how you feel than it is to dictate a narrative. And by the way, I still have
the unreal feeling, and I've already been there! It's just like a whole-
nother world, and I cant wait to show it to you! I've met several people in
the cities, out and about, already who've traveled europe after undergrad.
college, and everyone raves about italy - - its really like magic"
A few weeks ago, Katie drove out to my house to tell me that she had to go back to Italy. And that she wanted to take me with her! I can't begin to tell you the shock/joy/excitement/amazement/thrill/disbelief that swept over me. Quite literally, for days, I walked around muttering: "Oh my God!". That's all I could say!! ME an unknown shepherdess in Minnesota, going to ITALY???? No way. But it is real. My Beautiful Baby Girl (her nickname since she was a baby) ~ "La Mia Bella Bambina" in Italian ;-) wants to share her dream with me. To say that I am honored that she would want to take her mother along would be an understatement.
I think to really understand the significance of this, you'd have to know that we are not a "well to do" family. I really couldn't afford to send Katie to Italy for a semester of college. I took out a loan (on a CREDIT CARD!) to pay for it. Don't worry ~ I got a great interest rate and the loan is almost paid off. But I was so proud of my Beautiful Baby Girl for how hard she'd worked to put herself through college that I wanted to give her something special ~ something that would impact the rest of her life. Now she's giving it back to ME.
In 13 days, Katie and I will be departing for Italy. We're going to spend a couple of days/nights in Rome and then rent a car and tour Tuscany. One of the planned highlights of our trip is staying at a B&B in Tuscany and going horse-back-riding through the mountains and olive groves! I've even "Googled" for a few yarn shops in Rome and Florence!!
It's still not real. But it is exciting. Sometimes overwhelming. But oh-so-wonderful!!!
Dream says......"I don't suppose there will be room for ME on the plane? That's OK, I'm not really too keen at the thought of flying. I'll miss Mom but know she'll have a wonderful time. Hey Katie ~ how do you say "DREAM" in Italian???"