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Day 1 - Jet Lagged and Jubilant

From Santa Barbara to Roma via Barcelona was a 24-hour journey door-to-door. Some of this was due to the advice I received from Santa Barbara Airbus organizers to take the earlier one and be on the safe side. I don’t sleep on a plane so my exhaustion was and is blinding. I was never so happy (not to mention a sense of safety) to see a driver holding a sign with my name on it departing the Fumicino airport in Rome to give me a smooth ride to my hotel. A shower felt like heaven.

It would always be my suggestion to get up at a reasonable hour, have breakfast with a cappuccino and take a lengthy stroll to move the body and get some fresh air. As I was walking, I saw a Roman priest eating ice cream. I just had to sneak a photo. I walked as far as I could with low energy. Best to get on Roma time as soon as possible. I was eating a delicious lunch at 4:00 a.m. CA time. I was asked a couple times if it was just me and yes, I am solo in Roma and it's perfectly ok to be traveling on my own in Italy again.

I walked to the Basilica at the advice of the lovely hotel receptionist at Casa Vatican, Rossana and the owner, Tomasso greeted me like family. I felt so welcomed. I wandered into a few shops and bought plums from an open market.

As a breast cancer survivor and one who struggles with an immune disorder causing challenges with fatigue and pain, I persevere in life with the awareness and gratitude that life is precious, fragile, and filled with endless opportunity for adventure. It is my goal as a woman on her own (presently) to grasp every desirable sojoourn that comes my way. The desirable (dream-come-true) adventures granted by sendmeonvacation.otrg have been blessings indeed.

I will be in bed early tonight. Stay tuned for day 2 (my birthday) through day 7.

Keep on swimming through life,

Valerie Anne

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