October 7th, 2018: Flagstaff, Arizona

Dear World,

I have to confess, it’s been a difficult past couple of days. I am calling them difficult even though bad feels more appropriate right now.

I’m trying to make bad days troubling, or difficult, or challenging. Even then, is the word day sufficient either? Often times, for me, it’s really only a bad, troubling, difficult, or challenging couple of minutes or hours.

Though I guess it doesn’t matter as much how I define all this sadness but rather how I embody it. I feel it’s important for me to let it go through its course. To help the process, I’ve come to Flagstaff to visit some of my friends.

Thankfully I’ve had a little bit of much needed time to myself. I chose to go to a couple of art galleries in Historic Downtown. I felt at home among the blown glass, handmade political shrines, and landscape watercolor paintings.

In the first gallery, I was curious if the clerk was an artist.

“No, are you?”

Continue reading “October 7th, 2018: Flagstaff, Arizona”

September 30th, 2018: “Remember how really small they are.”

Dear World,

This week I spent some time with two little girls that live in my neighborhood. I had promised one of them I would make rainbow slime with her for her birthday. The one that was almost a month ago – whoops. To be fair I was out of town on the actual date.

As I came in the door the birthday girl popped her face into the front room. She pulled me into to kitchen so we could get all the supplies together. As we prepared her sister called from the front room where she was practicing piano with her mother, “Wait for me! I want to make slime too!” My heart began to dance to her music.

Continue reading “September 30th, 2018: “Remember how really small they are.””

September 1st, 2018: New York, New York

Dear World,

Greetings from New York City!

Can you tell I love this place? This is actually my second time here. This January I was here for a few days by myself. That was actually my first solo trip ever! Because of this, I think New York will always hold a special place in my heart.

So why am I here?

Well, way back a couple of months ago a friend of mine shared a link with me about this Broadway camp “for adults.” This particular link was talking about how they were giving away scholarships for each of their programs. I was clearly intrigued. It seemed like a new program and even though it was out of my budget I decided that it couldn’t hurt to apply.

The application wasn’t anything rigorous either. It didn’t even seem like a prestigious thing. There was no need to submit a resume or tape myself singing. I really only had to tell them about myself. Hm, okay how about this? Vail Varone: A Poem.

Continue reading “September 1st, 2018: New York, New York”

August 17th, 2018: Good Times at Goodwill

Dear World,

What a lovely Friday night I had!

My dearest friend, her younger sister, and I went “back to school shopping.” I was extra pumped about this for a few reasons.

When I was in high school, trying to grow into myself, I never truly felt like the clothing that I wore reflected who I was. Not to mention I had a lot of insecurities about my body back then. So finally being able to go shopping on my own and have the money and be around people that I wanted to shop with felt like such a treat!

It wasn’t until I think I bought my bell bottom jeans that I truly felt like a superstar in my clothing. I remember when they came in the mail. I nearly squealed as I ripped open the package.

Anyway, we spent the evening shopping. I felt so prepared. The day before I had gone through all of my clothing and tried every single piece on to look at myself in the mirror. I then wrote down all the pros and cons, and any possible hesitations. Once I was done I went through the list and categorized everything into, yes, no, maybe.

Continue reading “August 17th, 2018: Good Times at Goodwill”

August 6th, 2018: More Than a Haircut

Dear World,

There has been a lot going on in my head this past week… one of the most prevalent thoughts being how much I want new friends.

I don’t hate my current friends nor do I want to stop being friends with them. But I’m not stupid, I can see myself drifting away from some of them. I’ve undergone some enormous changes within the past year as have they. I’ve begun to wonder if this situation was inevitable.

Specifically, what I mean when I say I want new friends is, I want to find “my people” rather. You know? Those few rare souls that just get you a bit more than the rest of the planet.

It’s something that’s been in my mind even before my European adventure. However, it has begun to tug more and more on my heart since I’ve returned. This weekend was more of a pulling instead of a mere tug.

Continue reading “August 6th, 2018: More Than a Haircut”

19 June 2018: Barcelona, Determination, and Will-Power

Dear World,

I’m in Barcelona now! I can hardly believe this is my last stop. What’s even crazier is I have been in Europe for over a month now!

Initially, when I thought about writing this I was hesitant. Then I said, “Vail you accomplished something huge and there is nothing wrong with being excited to share that!” Hey, and isn’t that what this entire website is for?

There have been so many times during this adventure that I just wanted to give up. I cried sometimes and felt lonely as well. I missed out on things I wanted to do because I was tired or too nervous to go. I forgive myself for that because I am only capable of so much. I think I overestimated how much stamina I’d have. Especially considering the only solo travel experience I had prior to this, was a couple of days in New York- a place I had already been to in my own country. Though I will never regret being this ambitious because it was all so worth it.

Continue reading “19 June 2018: Barcelona, Determination, and Will-Power”

June 15th, 2018: Genova, Italy

Dear World,

Well, after a very, very, very stressful day of travel, I am here in Genova. Let me just say, I am a lot much patient than I ever thought I could be.

It was all worth it though. I’m here in the hostel and it’s so homey. All of the staff and guests are incredibly friendly. Plus THE BEACH!

Can you tell I’m excited?

With beach vibes,

love vail v

June 15th, 2018: Milan, Italy

Dear World,

I can do absolutely anything, I swear.

So a bit of a disaster occurred this morning.

I was supposed to leave Milan for Barcelona by train this morning. I had two connections. The first one was in Turin but I missed the train, the connection was only 12 minutes, which I’ve done before but depending on the size of the station your girl’s gotta break a sweat. Anyway, the next train going anywhere near Barcelona wasn’t leaving for another 8 hours.

I decided to take a train back to Milan Centrale, a much bigger train station. There I could just sit down and figure out what the heck to do since I need to get to Barcelona to fly home on Thursday.

I considered flying but it was out of my budget to book a flight last minute. I realized that I was not going to Barcelona today. Instead, I decided I still needed to get my butt to a beach today so I’m headed to Genova for the next two days. From there it will be much easier and quicker to take the train to Barcelona.

On top of all of this craziness, I’ve been feeling really sick. I think all this traveling is finally catching up to me. I’m pretty exhausted. It was such a bummer since yesterday was my only full day in Milan. I had to spend time resting. I guess there are worse things in the world.

I’m hoping to leave this stressful day behind and fully enjoy the beach. Fingers crossed that everything works out and I will see the Mediterranean soon!

With beach vibes,

love vail v

PS. For your viewing pleasure.

milan3.jpg
Oh, flowers make my heart so happy
milan2
So do fountains

June 13th, 2018: Verona, Italy

Dear World,

Well after a very, very, VERY stressful day of travel, I am here in Genova. And let me just say, I am a lot stronger and much more patient than I ever thought I was.

It was all worth it. This hostel is so homey, the people are so kind and we are all just hanging out watching football. Plus, I’m going to the beach tomorrow!

Can you tell I’m excited?

love vail v

June 13th, 2018: Venice, Italy

Dear World,

Life is good!

Since it’s almost the perfect halfway point between Venice and Milan, I am going to walk around Verona for a couple of hours. Plus my last name is Varone. Verona? Varone? Coincidence? I think not. Is this the land of my people? I guess I’ll have to find out.

Venice like every city so far has been incredible. Though, honestly, the canals smelled horrible.

I went to Burano and Murano which are two smaller nearby islands. They are famous for their lace and blown glass respectively. I got to see a man make a glass fish. Taking the boat over there was lovely too.

Like I said, life is good.

The most important thing I have learned on this journey so far: life has a way of working itself out, all you have to do is let it do so.

Ponder on that wisdom.

Keep dreamin’ on, I will be,

love vail v

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