How cool is it to have a huge bin of fresh oranges just waiting to be freshly squeezed right into your glass for breakfast? And right next to the unlimited supply of oranges a coffee machine grinding the beans per cup of coffee? Our first impression of breakfast was a great one. We sat down with our OJ’s/coffee and munched on the warm pastries, fresh fruit and granola while sitting outside looking past the lemon trees to the water. We could really get use to this hotel!
After breakfast we took the free hotel shuttle down to the town of Sorrento which was on the same road as our hotel at the bottom of the mountain. We started our tour of the city looking at their old fortress wall and then made our way to the cobblestone streets. There were lots of shops set up with all kinds of shopping and this time the prices were good in comparison to Positano. We played around, trying on hats…looking at leather belts and more lemon stores. Giff saw an Amore & Baci charm bracelet in the window (the Italian version of Pandora) and brought me over to see it. I have been wanting to form a charm bracelet with a charm from different countries to highlight our trip. Giff found one that was all about Italy. We went inside and had fun looking at all the charms and picking a bracelet and some charms to get it started. These charms are so detailed and represent major highlights in Italy like the Vatican, a lemon, a gondola etc. It will be fun to look in the other countries on our trip to complete the collection.
In between the shops were plenty of ice cream parlors and we found one that looked dangerous. We picked a couple of flavors and sat down to cool off from the hot sun before continuing our walk. We ended up walking around town for quite a while finding little back roads in the city. One area lead us to the water where people were swimming. We had to climb down several steps to the bottom of the cliff to get to the water, and once there…saw that it wasn’t a typical sandy beach. It was more like a blocked off swimming area. It had all kinds of beach chairs and umbrellas set up all over the docks and water chairs attached to a rope in the water. We looked around and then climbed back up the stairs enclosed by tunnels until we reached the city again.
We worked up an appetite walking all over the place and found a table at a pizzeria. It appeared to be a pretty local place and we had fun listening to the Italians chat at their tables as we crunched on our pizza and salad. We walked around just a bit more after our late lunch and then caught the shuttle back to our hotel.
We were tired and decided to enjoy our early evening at our hotel where we ordered food from the same restaurant, opened our wine and watched a movie in Italian.
Published by Giff Kabat
I grew up in Ohio as a kid, so of course I went to college at “THE” Ohio State University. I graduated in 2001 with a major in business finance. A month after graduation, I moved out to California with my college girlfriend (whom I married in 2005)…and started my career in sales (industrial sales for 5 years…then moved into medical laser sales for 4 years).
In 2009 I was 31 years old. I had a great job, a new house, and a beautiful wife. Just when I thought things couldn’t get any better…my wife and I found out we were going to have a baby. Everything was going according to plan…and I couldn’t have scripted a better life for myself.
Then in the same year…everything changed. My wife, Brandey, called me when I was on my way to work and told me over the phone, something I never thought could be possible in a million years. My beautiful 30-year old pregnant wife was just told that she had breast cancer. At that moment, everything stopped all at once. I immediately went to her…and learned of our new plan…which began with her needing surgery immediately…and the rest we would find out later.
The day we returned from the hospital after Brandey’s surgery…my father died. He had been battling an aggressive cancer of his own…and although he was the one person I wanted to speak with about Brandey having cancer…I never told him. My sister, Brooke, had just gotten married a few months ago, and although he was weak, he was able to walk his little girl down the aisle of her wedding. On the night before my sister’s wedding, Brandey and I told him that we were pregnant and about to make him a grandfather. It made no sense to tell him that everything had changed for us…so he died in peace knowing everything was “the way it should be” for his only 2 children.
2010 was the worst year of my life. We had lost our baby…and for 12 months I watched my wife fight cancer with multiple surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation treatments, and drug therapy. It was a difficult year for us…but we made it. When you go through something like this in life, you learn a lot about yourself and the people around you. I was amazed at the strength and courage of my wife…and how many good people there are in this world. I will be forever grateful for the ones who never ceased to amaze me with their kindness during this hard time. Family, friends, and sometimes complete strangers…helped us make it through this. I am, and will always be especially grateful to my mother, who was with my dad at the very end, when I couldn’t be there, and when things were at their worst. She has been so supportive throughout all of this, and without her everything would have been so much harder for me.
It’s 2011 now…and the plan we have for our life this year…is to make it the best year of our lives. Brandey is officially in remission from breast cancer and she has a 95% chance the cancer will never come back. Besides the love that I have for my wife and family, the loves of my life are food, wine, and adventure travel. My wife and I love traveling to new places, seeing natural wonders, and meeting new people from different parts of the world. So for the next 400 days…we’ve decided to travel the world…and celebrate our lives. There are so many things I took for granted in life that I will never take for granted again. My father worked for over 30 years at the same job with the same company…rarely took time off…and died at 64 years old right after his retirement. For me, this trip is a combination of a tribute to him, along with wanting to spend the time of my life with the “love of my life.”
* The only thing I will miss while we are gone is our family and friends (who we hope will meet us somewhere throughout our trip) and especially our 3 little kitties we left with my mom in Ohio to catsit for the next 400 days. I will also miss watching “American Football” over the weekend…but I’ll do my best to check the scores in the middle of the night.
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