My last flight for the next couple of weeks is finally over, and I can’t wait to get home. But you can either succumb to the umptieth-early-flight stress, or let yourself be surprised by the sun rising over the mountains covered in snow. Couldn’t help but feel a tiny bit closer to my husband who is the only one who truly managed to show me how to see the beauty in nature.
Today was not an easy day, and we were apart, but on these days one can only do their best and move on. And on those days, it is even more meaningful to have the right person(s) by your side. Thank you to my friend and colleague for getting me through this day and to my husband for supporting me even though he was thousands of miles from me.
Greetings from two very different places. Sometimes you’ve got to take a step back and enjoy the view.
I am in Strasbourg for the Plenary of the European Parliament. I have been travelling for a while now, and will be doing some more travelling soon. While I am beyond grateful to be here, to be a part of this and to be living the dream in a much better way than I ever pictured for myself, I am also missing two of the most important people in my life: my beautiful, beautiful sisters!
So here is a little #tbt to the second-to-last day before I got married, when my sisters and I took a nice walk in Val di Fiemme to go see the waterfalls just above the place where my husband was born and grew up. It was a precious moment that we shared, just the three of us.
A year ago my husband asked me to marry him. I cannot really explain how that memory will forever be truly special. I guess it was so heartfelt and so natural and spontaneous. Francesco’s proposal perfectly, magically embodied who we are. We are down to earth, and so incredibly in love.
It was a Sunday in September. I was working and he had just taken part in a 60+ k trail run in the Dolomites the day before and was about to leave on an airplane (see: I’m leaving on a jet plane…)
He woke up before dawn and had his entire family wake up to drive all the way to me, just to be sent off to a café to have breakfast by my mum who wasn’t ready to welcome everybody in the house just yet. I’m still wondering how my fiancé – who can never keep a thing from me or resist the temptation to show me my presents in advance – was able to pull it off without crumbling under the pressure. But he did.
When we went back to my parents’ place everybody sat down in the living room and Francesco went to talk to my mum, who told me to go to the kitchen. We were left alone. Francesco looked a bit tense, which he never is, but I thought he was maybe just tired from the effort of the trail. He took out a tiny ring box. Then he said:
“I had plenty of kilometres to think about this. It is hard to go down on one knee…”
I could tell his legs hurt. But he did go down on one knee. “Will you marry me?”
After a 6-day week of work between two countries – Belgium and Italy -, two interpreting modes – simultaneous and consecutive – and 5 languages – Italian, English, French, Slovak and plenty of Croatian – and about 60 km of running, I am stranded at the airport in Linate, waiting to go back to Brussels because tomorrow I have to go to work.
Shit happens, as do delays… and I can’t help being beyond exhausted. But I am with my husband, and we are in this together. We will make it, one way or another. And I am deliberately going to enjoy every minute I can spend with him, especially because Francesco is leaving again tomorrow. Destination: Strasbourg, for the plenary of the Parliament. I won’t be seeing him for five days, as it often happens. Every month, the Parliament holds a plenary session in Strasbourg. When we both have contracts for the Parliament, we both go. Most frequently, Francesco has contracts with the Parliament for Strasbourg and I have contracts with the SCIC in Brussels. So he goes, and I stay. That is the nature of our job, I guess, but I still miss everything of him. Interpreters are required to be nomads. Some leave their spouse behind, some leave their children with a nanny, some have to separate from their dogs, cats, snakes and parrots. I have never been attached to places. I can feel home pretty much anywhere. But I love the people I choose to have in my life fiercely. My mum being an interpreter herself, it was always hard to let her go as a child. That hasn’t changed now that I am married to a wonderful man who also happens to be an incredibly talented interpreter. You might argue that they come back. And they do, but then they leave again. And no, it doesn’t get easier with time.
Here in Belgium the weather is getting quite wet and “wintery”, while back in Trentino summer is still ongoing. My mother decided to feed my jealousy with this pic taken at Rifugio Laresei (between Trentino and Veneto), but it gave me the chance to show that up in the mountains we do appreciate the EU, particularly because we were right on the front during WWI… Nothing makes you love a peace project like the experience of war.