[Upfront disclaimer: I know these posts are incredibly back-dated, and the world has collapsed into apocalyptic shock from the election yesterday… I am still making sense of my thoughts and feelings but until then, here are posts from simpler times (i.e., last month!)]

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Making friends with the locals…

Fun fact: did you know that a region in northern Italy speaks German?  South Tyrol used to belong to the Austria-Hungarian empire and was annexed by Italy at the end of WWI.  Today, there is an interesting mix of German and Italian customs, language, and cuisine. For example, almost every restaurant has high-quality German and Italian options (like Italian restaurants have great schnitzel).  And apparently, it was some Italian dude’s job to go around and “Italianize” (or maybe “Italicize?”) all the German place names.  For example, the city of Bolzano (Italian) is also known as Bozen (German).

I spent 5 days in South Tyrol, visiting my friend, Sol, in her hometown and partaking in sunshine, the Alps, Italian food (cheat days galore!), and my favorite…the castaña (chestnut)!

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Knottkino: outdoor cinema!

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Bolzano dom

Here were the highlights:

In Bolzano:

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Nuf sed…

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Homemade pasta…yums!

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Market

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Hanging out with chestnuts!

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Me and Florian with a beloved chestnut!

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“Super light and healthy” South Tyrolean ravioli (schlutzkrapfen) in background pan and dumplings (knödel) in foreground plate

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Looks like I’m going to lick the saw…

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Great little restaurant in the mountain for our traditional South Tyrolean meal!

Knottkino: outdoor cinema featuring the outdoors!

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Making friends with the locals. Apparently swinging your legs back and forth for 15 minutes is good for the knees…

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Beautiful film showing…the landscape!

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Custom barbecue in beautiful coop garden space

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Roasting chestnuts…om nom nom!

Starwood hotel living!
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What is THAT?!

Busy last 24 hours in South Tyrol…perfect representation of the region: Hiking in the Alps, exploring Merano (Sol’s hometown), hitting the thermal baths, and gorging on pizza!

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Cool gondola ride

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Freaking cold and snowing at the top!!! Check out my gorgeous grandma sweater I borrowed from Sol

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Contemplating the majesty of nature …and trying not to freeze

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Grabbing a bite at a cute mountain lodge at the top

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Making friends with the locals again

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Mmm…apfel strudel. South Tyrol is known for their apples.

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No words…

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After stumbling down the snowy hiking paths, we hit another lodge frozen in time to warm up.  Then took a cool 15 minute ski lift down…

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Love the decor. The bar was managed by an old grandma

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View from chair lift

Exploring Merano

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Cool artwork in Merano…or I should really move away from the big ass metal mosquito

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Someone should probably report the dinosaur egg nest…

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Last dinner in Merano, South Tyrol with Sol’s mom

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Veggie pizza

Quick pit stop in Verona before heading to airport… home of Romeo and Juliet

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