My First & Best Lesson Abroad (Torino, Italy)

Updated: Jul 28, 2020

His favorite spot.

After many years I finally went back to visit the beautiful Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace), in Torino, Italy, with my grandma. To say that I was in awe, is an understatement; seeing such beauty all in one beautiful palace was nothing short of incredible.

The Palazzo Reale is easily one of the most magnificent places to visit - like Versailles in Paris, only a tad smaller. You enter a beautiful castle that makes you travel back in time, making you feel like you are supposed to be wearing a big, royal dress. Asides from the beautiful architecture, furniture, and lighting, it is filled with endless works of art and has an immense, green park outside. In this garden, you can walk around and enjoy the scenery, along a fresh of breath air with smell of pines and roses. My favorite spot, if you walk far enough, you can see the Mole Antonelliana, the museum of the movie theater.

As I was walking around the palace, taking pictures of the angels painted on the ceiling, I was approached by a Brazilian man who spoke very little English. At the beginning I was a little startled and alert, because of how often I was told "stranger danger", but then I decided to ignore the saying and chat with him.

I am so glad I did.

He first approached me to show me the best spots for pictures and we quickly ended up chatting about how beautiful the art was. As we were chatting about the art above our heads, he pointed to his favorite spot.

We struggled in speaking with each other, it was a mix of "sign language", English, Portuguese and Italian. Yet, we were able to understand one another. He was also on a solo tour, he was touring all over South America & Europe, and he shared the same exact passion for traveling. His next stop after Italy would be Spain.

Meeting him was amazing because besides the shared passions between us, he was a happy, genuine man who could not stop smiling from ear to ear when sharing his stories with me, a stranger, and hearing about my adventures.

I am sharing this story for a few reasons - to shine a light on this stranger I met and to explain how I am thankful to have shortly met such a happy, kind soul. As well as the fact that this is a nice reminder that there’s still lots of good people, this guy taught me one of the most important lessons: stranger does not always mean danger.

This encounter happened two years ago today, on June 5th, 2018. I will always wish I remembered his name, but remembering his kindness and happy spirit is enough for now. Because of this Brazilian man, I have bonded with many different strangers all over the world, moments I have blogged about that will be coming out soon. Stay tuned :)

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