January 1, 2019 - When we first moved from New York to Florence, I kept a journal—several actually—to chronicle my discovery of the city: first impressions, Italian words, curiosities, notes from cultural excursions, rushed sketches of bridges and buildings. If I had felt apprehension about adjusting to a new life before moving, it was gone by the time I unpacked my belongings and settled into my small sunlit room in our remote villa on Via Madonna delle Grazie.
Eventually, I stopped writing about Florence. I grew accustomed to the untarnished beauty; the freshness of change wore off and somehow became less worthy of dedicated diary entries. That’s not to say that I fell out of love with the city. On the contrary, it never ceased to amaze me. Fifteen years later, it still holds me captive. Rereading early accounts, I giggle at my innocence and feel nostalgic for that magical time of discovery—even more so now, as I finally prepare to leave.
On this first day of the new year, and the last day in my home, I honor the true essence of the life I have lived and loved here: the possibility of movement from one home to the other, the balance of one identity with the other, the excitement of frequent change, the expectation of frequent return.