The road was long and winding, climbing higher and higher into the Tuscan hills. The world around us was falling slowly below. Every so often, a crack of light through the trees, a gap in the mountain side, revealed a slice of Italy so quaint and perfect and far away that it was almost like we truly were being transported, moving backwards in time. The seven mile ascent took the best part of half an hour after which we were met by Mario, cigar in hand, walking us slowly to the apartment, stopping at intervals to speak to the residents of this mountain top village. A bottle of wine on the table from his vineyard which we were advised to drink only whilst sitting down, terracotta tiles and the palpable feeling of a home loved and lived in.
A push of the shutters.
A world opening out before my eyes.
Mountains, villages, birds taking flight below us, my heart filling up in a way it only every does on Tuscan soil. We had found something here, discovered a piece of the world. It was occupied but somehow it was ours. Here, nestled above the valley, was a tiny universe. The chatter of families sitting down to eat, the sound of Pink Floyd from a balcony beside us, women who have lived here an age hanging out washing between the crooked buildings. The buzz of life was so real, yet the feeling of calm like no other.
I came alive in Italy, a piece of my heart will forever remain in Trasilico.
Trasillico is a mountain top village, situated just outside the town of Gallicano, 40 minutes north of Lucca in the region of Tuscany.