As soon as I see these walls, my breath is deeper, something settles. I made Lucca my home for a month and, in the best way, fear I never left. There are places I have gone that wrap me up so tightly and so warmly that I need to leave without looking back, forgetting to gather up all of myself. Lucca has my breath.
The entire town is surrounded by an unbroken circle of 40 foot walls, as wide as roads in most parts, with large outlets of trees and parks. You’ll find many people renting and riding bikes around the walls and at night, many people sitting on the edge with a bottle of wine to keep them company, as the sun sets behind the mountains in the distance.
I saw those walls like the endless circle of someone’s arms when you can feel they are hugging more than just your body. Lucca scooped me up and spun me around. There is no wondering where to practice, only where to practice first. Let the walls carry you and lay you in the grass; if you trust them enough they may sit you on the edge.
The last time I was in Italy, I had just started to put time into my yoga practice. It was my last destination before returning home after three months and it was my time to process and collect myself. I was fortunate enough to land in Lucca. It is a quieter destination, at least in November when I was there last, and if you aren’t shopping or eating, there’s not too many things that you feel pressured to do. I didn’t feel like I needed to leap out of bed every morning to start exploring. I was able to just be. I was able to take a breath and maybe I feel so much of myself there because thats where I decided what would be.
I also think back to how much I was lugging around; a backpack, a 15lbs carry-on, and a 50lbs suitcase! Now I feel lighter and I pack lighter. My new travel essentials for this trip have been:
Gaiam Foldable Travel Mat : for any yogi traveling light and wondering where the hell to pack a mat or how to carry it around as you explore, this is your mat!! A non slip mat that folds up only a bit bigger than a binder, it fits in my daily backpack perfectly! There’s something reassuring about knowing I could practice whenever I get the urge and to have a mat that goes with my everywhere has transformed how accessible my practice is.
Copper H2O water bottle : not only beautiful and a great conversation starter, my copper water bottle has been packed with me whenever I go (you’ll see it next to my mat in the picture above ha) 800mL of healthy, copper infused water to keep me hydrated! And I cannot recommend the Copper H2O company enough! There are a lot of companies selling copper water bottles and not being honest about the materials they are using. Copper H2O is so friendly and makes themselves very accessible to their customers, it is very evident that they are invested in our wellbeing (if you have trust issues with online companies like me, this is a huge relief)!
$34-42 : http://www.copperh2o.com
Wireless Power Beats headphones : while I love enjoying the surroundings while I practice, especially when I’m outside, I also love to listen to music! It is nearly impossible to wear wire headphones and do yoga so these have been a life saver!!
My next Ever Unlikely destination will be on the coast, to the beach we go!