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Mission Europe 2: Soon to be a Star Studded Affair

In exactly 29 days I will be on a plane bound for Italy.  You would think I would have a more solid plan by now.  Well I do and I don’t.  The first two weeks of my seven week adventure are planned out in great detail.  I have a companion for those first two weeks and we will be taking Italy by storm.  After an 18-hour flight we arrive in Turin at 6pm on Monday October 15th, crash for the night and then head off on an 8-hour train to see my friend Peppe Zullo.  After 4 days of what is sure to be an unforgettable experience, we will head to Bologna and the Festival of Forgotten Fruits.  This is a festival that some readers may remember I wanted to attend in 2010 but never made it.

After a morning surrounded by unique fruits, we will drive up the coast to Cinque Terre.  We intend to walk around, be lazy and absorb the vibes in these UNESCO world heritage fishing towns.  Then it’s off for a day at the Truffle Festival in Alba and then a picturesque drive will lead us to Venice!  Oh Venezia!  On my list of top destinations to visit in my lifetime, in two nights and two days I will explore every little back alley I can find and most likely stand on the Rialto Bridge singing… “♫♪ When the moon hits your eye, like a big pizza pie ♪♪…” before being carted off for disorderly public behavior.  After my quick love affair with Venice I will return to the Italian city that started this whole thing, Turin.  Seven days of sightseeing, festival-going, class-taking, wine-drinking and Italian-talk-attempting.

On October 31st, Halloween to be exact, my travel companion departs and then I am on my own.  Now I do not say this in a sad tone; I quite enjoy my solo adventures.  During the 5 weeks to follow I hope to find a place to celebrate Halloween, my birthday and a European Thanksgiving.  I will also spend a week or so in Barcelona.  However, at the moment I have no idea where I will stay, I have a few leads on apprenticeships and there are a few other festivals I hope to attend.

“But, Chandler, where are the stars, other than the ones in your eyes?”  I know that is what all you readers must be wondering…  Well, drumroll please… I am both happy and proud to announce that due to my innate awesomeness, I have scored an interview and photo shoot at not one, not two, but 3 different Michelin star restaurants!  …but wait!  Hold your applause.  One restaurant is in Turin, the other two in Barcelona.  I have also been invited to dine in one of them!  I am awaiting a response from a fistful of other Michelin restaurants and chefs and will keep you all posted.  Ok…now, you may applaud.

Now I don’t want to give away the names of the restaurants just yet, I need to keep y’all interested somehow.  In the meantime before my next post I hope to hear from a few readers.  I am taking suggestions on interview questions.  I leave you all with a few photos of my recent herb garden successes and local Independence Day parade sights.  With stars in my eyes, nervous excitement in my heart and my everyday awesomeness, I am off to try to nail down some more details of my trip.  Wish me luck!

Until next time!

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