Before my sister and I left for Italy, my mom took me aside and said, “You know Heath, Italy changes people.” Changed? Maybe. But what I am most certainly is deeply, deeply inspired. Here’s why:

Catching your first glimpse of Venice when the light is golden and perfect.

My sister looking ferocious in this outfit.

A beautiful linen shop.

The view of Tuscany.

Nature walks through Cortona.

Vivid and thriving flowers that assault you with their aroma.

Taking a cooking class and getting really into it.

White beans with sage and olive oil.

Getting really hot in the Tuscan sun and then taking a dip in the icy pool.

Drinking this Barbera D’Asti.


Goat’s milk cheese from Piemonte, served with honey soaked walnuts.

Watermelon granita.

Traveling with someone who suddenly exits the conversation and starts writing poetry.

La Villa Hotel in Piemonte.