Trip Start Apr 28, 2009
Trip End Jun 10, 2009

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Where I stayed
Pensione Colomba, Praiano

Flag of Italy  ,
Tuesday, May 5, 2009

After a long, rather cramped flight (especially for 6'6" Rutherford), we arrived in Rome last Wednesday morning, excited for our journey. We checked into the Blue Hostel, which we would highly recommend, and after a lovely nap we started our exploration. Our first meal in Rome was definitely one of the best in Italy- mmmm that lasagna! After that meal, however, we didn't pick the best restaurants in Rome apparently, since the food we ate was not the greatest. I was thinking about everyone who told me I was going on an "Eat, Pray, Love" adventure. This was not a good start to "Eat!" Thank goodness for gelato at least!
Anyway, we spent our few days in Rome just wandering around and exploring what it was we were doing in Italy. After we found ourselves almost frantically, strangely searching for the river, it became apparent to us that Rome was not the best place for us to achieve the goals of the project. Rome felt too close to home (besides the spectacular ruins and delicious gelato, of course). We needed to be more off the beaten path. Maybe not even on a path at all... we needed to be making a new trail. So we discussed Rutherford's vision and dream for a while in our cozy hostel room until we finally were on the same page- something that was tough for us to do before the trip started due to our busy, separate schedules. It was a glorious feeling. There were tears. We took notes. We figured out what it was that we were doing on this adventure.
So the next morning we rented a very dented Alfa Romeo and happily started driving south to the Amalfi Coast. However, getting out of Rome turned into quite the challenge considering the map we had did not label streets correctly. Grrrr. We got rather frustrated and considered skipping the Italy portion of the trip all together. Why didn't Italy feel right? We looked into flying right to India since we felt India was the perfect fit for what we are trying to accomplish, but it is very good that did not work out. We stayed in Italy, got out of Rome (yeay!) and after driving on crazy, curvy, tiny roads (no wonder that car is so dented), we arrived in one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. We have been staying in a town called Praiano, which clings to cliff walls overlooking the stunning Mediterranean Sea. We decided to spend the rest of our time in Italy here. This feels perfect. The deck off of our hotel room (230 steps up from the road) definitely has become one of our favorite spots. Here Rutherford has guided me through meditation and yoga practices. It has been an incredible place for healing... and with the help of Rutherford's practices, I cannot think of the last time I have felt this healthy.
The food here on the Amalfi Coast has been wonderful as well. We have been eating fresh, local dishes that have surprised and impressed. It also has become clear that Italy does fit into this project perfectly- we have met some incredible people. Rutherford has interviewed some great characters and the new love of my life (the Canon XH A1s) and I have thoroughly enjoyed capturing it all. The first interview was with an Italian Catholic Priest. We went to one of his church services, which was just like a service back home except that it was entirely in Italian (obviously). It inspired Rutherford, and the Priest was so compassionate and open minded- he clearly was happy with the path he has chosen. We had to get a translator for this interview as well- something that I had not dealt with while working in Vail, but it worked out great. Rutherford also interviewed the chef/ owner of our favorite little wine bar in Praiano and an Israeli man who escapes to Italy regularity with his family. R-ford (I'm trying to figure out a nickname for him- please send suggestions) also got to cook fresh fish and pasta with an adorable chef who cooks while looking out at the sea from his kitchen. It was quite enjoyable to watch Rutherford rip the guts out of an anchovy that had been caught in the sea that morning. Footage coming soon...
The bottom line- Italy has been wonderful. We have walked hundreds of stairs down to the beach, boated to the Island of Capri, ate dinner in an alley in Amalfi, talked about everything and anything, sat around and read books, and shot some meditation and yoga tips (which I would highly recommend checking out when they are up online). Meditating every morning (this morning doesn't count- I was so sleepy) with Rutherford has already opened my eyes to a more relaxed and energized life (yes, both things at the same time!)
Tomorrow we leave for India. Which reminds me... I need to go eat one more gelato before we leave this country. I will blog again soon! -Jeniece
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rentenbach on

Little One I Love You!!
Hi Jeniece,

First off, obviously B. Hayes should be Rutherford's new nickname. Then you can evolve it to B Hazzie and B Hizzle and it is quite fun. (Keep in mind, this comes from a girl who is called 'Cloons' on a regular basis.)

I'm so happy that you were able to find your rhythm in Italy, and getting off the well traveled path suits what you two have set out to do best. I hope India proves to be just as inspirational to you two, if not more.

I can't wait to read more and pick up some new yoga moves from you. I miss hearing your voice on the phone. I'm also super nostalgic when reading this blog entry as I know with each passing day that I'm at my desk, this time a year ago I was having a life-changing adventure with you and Dixon.

Let me know when you land in LAX on the 19th. And Rutherford is welcome to stay with us too if he needs a spot!

Be safe, have fun and keep your heart open.
Love you!

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