Monday, December 17, 2007

i went to italy . . .

Four weeks ago today we were winging our way back to JFK on the Delta Big Bird after 27 days of travel in Italy. It’s about time to share some of the photos I took and to tell more about our adventures. Things are a bit slow here in Slowland, so here’s a look.

Here is our apartment in the Piazza Santo Spirito in Florence. The beautiful Santo Spirito church was just down to street to the north of us. Unfortunately it was locked except for a couple of hours on Sunday. Vandalism. Most disappointing. That’s your devoted correspondent in the window, 4th floor, right.

You’ve heard of a Murphy Bed, the kind that pulls down from the wall at night and then disappears behind cabinet doors during the day? This apartment had what I call a Murphy Kitchen. It was a tiny space at the end of the living room.

Time to eat? Just swing open the doors and Presto!

That strange looking gizmo on the top shelf to the right was a very elaborate toaster with all sorts of levers and pincers. Not your basic Sunbeam. Two little burners, a tiny ‘fridge in the lower right “cabinet” and one deep drawer on the left where all the pots and pans were stored. Right hand top cupboard for food stuffs. Left hand cabinet for something I’ll show you later. But now, on to the bathroom

I called this the “Beam me up, Scotty” shower. A glass tube that did serve perfectly well but leaked all over the floor. The sealing mechanism that holds the curved doors shut is either by a magnetic strip or vacuum. Never could figure it out.

Behind the shower was a faux fresco painting of a lovely landscape, framed in brickwork and covered in glass to look like a window. Clever.

This is the sight that greeted us every day as we stepped out of the front door. Right across the street was this vegetable stand. This gentleman was there early, rain or shine, except Sunday.

He had, among other things, the most beautiful radicchio imaginable. And delicious. There are three varieties available: one looks like Romaine lettuce, with long purple leaves, best for cooking; one looks almost like celery with thick white stalks and frizzy purple curls at the end; and then there is this kind, most familiar to us.

On Saturdays the flower lady drives up with her van full of gorgeous blooms. At that time of year, chrysanthemums, pansies, and especially cyclamen fill the flower markets. I have no idea where those sunflowers came from. Window boxes and balconies are all abloom, some even with geraniums that are taken inside for the winter.

That’s how it was in our neighborhood. How about yours? We’ll venture into the heart of Florence next time.


At 10:27 AM, Blogger mary ann said...

My very first photo in Italy was for Bill and it was of the hotel shower "stall". We have never met an Italian shower that didn't spray on the entire bathroom. Love this post and am enraptured by the virgins and thank you for all those colorful photos. I remember the one behind bars from LY too ~ I bet you could submit this for publication to an even wider audience. Thanks, FevBrain.


Post a Comment

<< Home