Monday, July 28, 2014


I am on the ferry coming back from Corsica.

[I am a very hard time writing this because the sappiest, least original, terrible, most annoyingly love-sick music is on some stupid loop: and the worst part is, it’s in ENGLISH! It’s not even in French! It is the worst playlist of American music ever imaginable. ˙˙ baaaaaaaaayyyyyyyybyyyyy, it’s not your faaaauuuuuuult ˙˙ ]

It has been a fantastic two weeks of family, activities, nature, swimming, hiking, cooking, exploring, and more.

Our first travel day was very intense: we left New York at 9pm on a Friday evening, and flew, going forward in time, to London. We arrived at Hethrow Airport at 8am, which was actually 3am our time, so it was a night of really little sleep.

What I really remember from the day was sleeping everywhere I had the chance (on subways, park benches, museums, monuments), and the announcements, with the voice of a British automated lady, that you heard on the Heathrow express. It kept replaying again and again and again and again... I’m pretty sure I memorized it and can do it in the exact voice.

Still, it was pretty cool to be in London! I’ve had a fascination with British accents for so long, and it was so fascinating to be in a place where every single person around me had one!

We were only in London for 12 hours, because we took an evening flight to Nice, France. We got to our rental apartment at 12am, and didn’t get to bed until 2am. I think I’ve always had some sort of slight travel anxiety; often when I’m in a new place and I’m going to sleep, I start to feel really off, uncomfortable, and slightly scared, even at my age now. The bed was hard, the room was tacky, my head hurt: all these little things just piled up and I honestly felt so shut down and nervous.

I eventually fell asleep, though, and the next morning my brother and I woke up at 12pm! We left the apartment, bought some amazingly delicious pizzas with rich, creamy cheese and meat, and boarded the ferry to Corsica.
The ride took 6 hours, but my dad, brother, and I shooed my mom away and began a birthday card making factory for my mom’s birthday, which was 2 days away! I had brought a bunch of art supplies from home and we each made her our own card and one big, colorful banner.

We arrived on the island late at night, and took a taxi to the rental car company, and then began a 3 hour drive to our rental.

When we finally got to there, in the town of Belvedere Compomoro, there was no need for any travel anxiety because the apartment was so cute and quaint and perfect. Apartments that we stay in are almost always tacky and so poorly decorated, and I’ve always had a love and curiosity for design, and I really liked this place from the minute I entered it.

Roman and I shared a bed (technically, we shared the bed with his stuffed animals too (-__-), so I only got about a third of the bed, but we both (or should I say the five of us) immediately fell asleep.

The week began with a swim in the gorgeous sea at the Compomoro beach. The water was like a paint pallet of every shade of blue imaginable: baby blue, turquoise, navy. After a swim, some soccer, a picnic, a photoshoot, and reading, we took a hike up and over the stunning cliffs along the coast. I love looking out and seeing just the ocean and sky at their vastness. It’s always so hard to believe that there’s more beyond what the eye can see, because often it looks like the ocean goes on forever.

-wait a minute.

I have just realized that I'm really not so interested in all the specifics of this trip.

What about the feelings, the tastes, the sights, the beauty of Corsica?

The sounds, the ocean, the rocks, the heat?

The quiet, the peace, the energy, the movement?

The poetry of the waves as they shift, the sand as it blows in the wind?

The sights of the sea, the views, that come although are simply different expressions of the same thing, are each so uniquely beautiful?

The walks along the coasts, feet slipping as rocks slide beneath you, but the relief and confidence when you reach the top?

The pleasure that comes from a bite of mouth-watering, creamy cheese on a crunchy, crisp slice of bread?

The pain for your feet when you step on rocks on your way to the water but the feeling that it's all worth it when you emerge into a gorgeous, clean, clear, vast ocean?

The freedom when your body can float and swim and splash and dunk?

The inner triumph when you dive for a ball, catch it, and then fall into the water?

The delight of the ocean as it cools and awakens you?

The radiance of the sun as it heats your body and puts your mind at rest?

The content that comes when you've made people laugh?

The juice that runs down your arms after you've bitten in to the ripest, most succulent peach?

The absence of noise yet the squeals of nature?

Being with the people you love the most and realizing how special they are to you?

The rocky beach with a private inlet for us that led way to the most beautiful body of water in existence that welcomed us on my mom's birthday, and the picnic that we had to celebrate her brilliance.

The fright of my brother at the sight of young, wild boys setting off firecrackers in every little nook and cranny possible.

The hike at Col de Bavella that led to a cliff that I bravely climbed first, where at the top there was a giant whole in the rock and through it seemed to be an entire, undiscovered corner of the universe.

The boat ride in Bonifacio that cruised along the coast and led us into a spectacular cave that sprouted up triangularly and had a natural carving in the top the shape of Corsica itself.

The topless beaches and my brother's natural, sly, but adorable weirded out fascination with the women.

The beach of Porto Legio and its beach with endless sandbars, radiant color, soft sand, sublime water.

My hair blowing as I peered out the window on our endless drives to explore the island.

Our constant visits to Spar supermarket for cheese, bread, plums, nectarines, cookies, sausages.

The citadel in Calvi and my tears wiped away by the positivity and comfort of my parents.

The banana nutella crepe that was utterly devoured as we sat, a play toy of the wind, overlooking the port, in which the average boats didn't seem at all worthy of the picturesque turquoise sea they lay in.

The 8 mile hike to Girolata, both within the green shelter of the forest and the roasting heat of the sun kissed cliffs along the coast, where the view truly increased in spectacularity after each step up. The weariness and fatigue just disappearing as we powered up the last mile with speed and determination.

The forty foot jumps from the massive cliff and the smack, painful yet exhilarating, as we hit the water. The "relaxacoaster" as we hiked up the Riviere du Fango, jumped from rocks, sun tanned like geckos, discovered the natural slides and jaccuzis hidden in mini gorges.

The endless family photos and the smiles that didn't even really have to hide reality because there truly was beacoup du happiness.

The interviews with waiters and workers and people, and uncovering reality through this questioning: hearing so many stories and then thinking about how amazing your own is.

The kayaking in strict silence yet the giggles that inevitably emerge when you break the rules; the row of turtles resting on a long on the side of the river that just seemed to be, not really feeling or not feeling, just being. The flowers and the plants and the lily pads and the water bugs that we went through as we paddled.

The meats from our weber grill that finally gave summer it's much-needed classic taste.

Just endless swimming, endless talking, endless hiking, endless laughter, endless games, endless tastes, endless beauty, endless family is what my experience in Corsica was all about.