The 14th of February is coming up fast and it has me reminiscing about some of the more romantic places we’ve visited. So, here they are in no particular order.
I remember one of my first times visiting Greece and the island of Ios, where the great poet Homer is buried. I climbed up the rocky hill across from the main town to watch the sun set into the Aegean Sea. I remember standing so close to her and simply smiling thinking how lucky I was for a girl as beautiful as that to be interested in me. I look back and know it wasn’t love, not the kind of all-consuming love that happened when I met Amanda, but it was sweet, it was young, both of us just finishing up college and standing at the starting line of the rest of our lives. We both had just started exploring the world and had never been to that place before and were wrapped up in the beauty and possibility of a relationship. We are still friends and I occasionally think about what might have been. I’ve even taken Amanda up that hill to the monastery to watch the sunset, and as perfect as that was, it still wasn’t like the first time.
I have mentioned Florence, Italy no less than 12 times on this blog, and if you’ve been reading, you know why. The city is special to Amanda and me; it was the home of the rebirth of our lives as the two of us as individuals formed into a couple. We both would say right away that Florence is a romantic city, a city where the skyline is mainly preserved in its renaissance splendor. You should make the trip to see the city from afar by going up to the Piazzale Michelangelo and seeing city as a whole; its river, bridges, red-roofed homes, and the great Cathedral of Santa Maria del Forie (the Duomo). We make it a point to get our picture taken every couple of years in the piazza, and those pictures remind us of how we are connected to the city.
Tanzania was one of the most romantic locations we’ve ever visited. I’m not sure why, but staying in a tent (one furnished with desks, sink and a full bathroom, of course) is somehow ingrained in us as a romantic ideal. I don’t know why the idea of mosquito netting, in all its functional glory, is so romantic. I really think there is something about laying in bed at night as the sounds of the wild slip through the thin canvas, cuddling up with the one you love is so amazing. The memories you make with the primal world will keep you warm even on the coldest nights.
Amanda here. Zeke asked me to add a romantic spot to the list, and I’ve selected any and all of the Caribbean islands we’ve visited. I love – LOVE – waking up when we feel like it, heading to a white-sand beach, enjoying the water and then reading until I feel the urge to snooze. A beach nap is one of my favorite naps. Okay, that doesn’t sound romantic, but I’m also a big fan of warm, beachy destinations because it means I spend the whole trip with my husband. No work, no gym classes, no routine — just time with this delightful person I married.
We can be anywhere in the world, really, it’s the restful time together that spells romance to me.