Pre-leaving for this trip I like to think that my blog posts were pretty well put together: grammatical errors were at a minimum, I’d put a solid three hours into editing all the images with the exact sort of mood I’d initially imagined, and I’d shoot to go in-depth on whatever topic we’d picked.
The reality of traveling 24/7 is that that style just isn’t going to be doable anymore. We’re just on our first week and already it feels like there’s a solid fifteen things I wanted to get done each day that are rolled over to the next. I’m treating this challenge as a blessing. I’m a perfectionist and spend way too much time agonizing over the smallest details that, truthfully, no one but me and maybe Porter will notice on here (I cannot tell you the number of times I’ve shown him two photos with the tiniest editing differences and begged him to decide which one was better, only to roll my eyes after he’s said, “they’re literally the exact same, Anna, move on”).
So in lieu of this new approach, here are some pics from our last morning in Rome. Every time I’ve been here I’ve had the chance or made the effort to wake up super early at least one morning and go to the Trevi Fountain. I feel like almost everyone who comes to Rome makes a point to see it, but in all honesty, I kind of think it’s the absolute worst to go any time other than the crack of dawn. It just gets swamped, like I-just-got-hit-with-another-selfie-stick swamped. I’m not a fan of crowds and neither is Porter (especially when it comes to taking pictures). We’ve been doing this blogging thing for awhile now, but have resigned ourselves to the reality that, for us at least, the feeling of awkwardness that engulfs you when you know a solid twenty plus people are watching you have your photo taken is never going to go away completely. So, early morning shoots it is.
This trip I was expecting Port to kind of struggle with jumping directly into those morning-shoot five am alarms, but it’s been the exact opposite. Neither of us have experienced any negative effects of jet lag this trip. Like zero. This isn’t all that rare for Porter because he doesn’t struggle with falling asleep once we get to a new place, but for me, I usually spend the first night dealing with this weird circadian rhythm issue I have where my body doesn’t physiologically know why it’s still awake after so many hours and responds by thinking it’s in danger. Rapid heartbeat, nausea, and anxiety all hit me as soon as I lay down to go to sleep and so, my first few days in Europe are usually kind of touch-and-go. This has always happened to me so I came prepared (lavendar, chamomile tea, etc.), but I didn’t have to use any of it, and I’m giving all of the credit to our flight over with Lufthansa.
When Porter and I planned this trip, we had the pipe dream that we might be able to collaborate with an airline with intensely progressive environmental policies. We made a short list of the very few airlines that enacted the kind of ecological quality standards we think the airline industry as a whole should adopt, and at the very top of that maybe two-airline list was Lufthansa. Not only do they fund tons of projects to offset the carbon emissions of their planes, but the airline has dedicated incomparable amounts of time and energy to being ahead of their field in using planes that keep their harm on the environment as low as current technology allows. By some strange coincidence, Lufthansa just so happened to be opening their first American lounge in Boston this summer, and also to start flying their most environmentally-friendly airliner yet to and from Boston to Munich (the A350).
Neither Porter or I are really fans of flying, to be honest. We both are afraid during turbulence, and we don’t make a great flying-team just yet (if one of us is freaking out, the other one isn’t much comfort), but the experience of flying first class to Europe on Lufthansa had us singing a very different tune. I had never flown first class before (let alone on a transatlantic flight) and I also had never been exposed to the wonder that is business class lounges. The Lufthansa lounge in Boston has all the modern, neutral details I’m in love with, a gorgeous complimentary dinner buffet (think hotel breakfast, but better), access to showers if you’re on a layover, and the kind of soft melodic music that makes you feel like you’re already on vacation, not in the process of getting to one. But if the lounge raised our expectations of the flying experience, the plane solidified them.
I always say to Port that I created a monster the first time I booked him a massage when he was visiting me in Paris, because now he’s “tasted the fruit” and agonizes over whether it’s worth the money to get one every six weeks or so (it isn’t, Porter, just stretch more). That’s essentially what Lufthansa’s done to us. Seats that can recline into beds, televisions bigger than those giant Mac monitors mom’s always seem to buy, buttons to adjust the firmness of your seat, hot lavender hand towels brought around maybe half a dozen times, and literal quilts to sleep under. Usually we try our best to sleep on the flight over, but when I asked Porter why he wasn’t going to sleep he just shrugged and said I don’t want to miss any of the amenities. He also told me to “act cool” minutes after we got on the plane because I was pushing every possible seat button. I regret nothing.
Okay, so I lied, this post was actually longer than usual, but we have more Rome pics to come, and those one’s will actually be short. We’re in Lake Garda now and are heading to Venice in just a few days.
Anna Lisa & Porter
*Thank you to Lufthansa Airlines for sponsoring this post. As always, all thoughts & opinions remain our own.