I have to share a funny thing that just happened, but first will pass along Maria's message to give her best to our blogging buddies (you know who you are!) So greetings from Maria, who is off to Spain to meet her husband and hopes to blog at least one entry while there.
Also I will quickly say that after lunch, I wandered around, up to Piazza SS Annunziata, where I turned and looked across the piazza, to a view straight down a narrow street with a view of the Duomo at the end, and above the dome...a fragment of a rainbow! Well, if my spirits weren't lifted before, they certainly were now. What an amazing sight, I watched for the longest time until the rainbow faded and then carried on my way...
Eventually finding myself in the area of the Accademia...naturally I couldn't resist one gaze upon the glorious David. I did actually look at some of the other art in there too this time though. There was a special exhibit of Giovanni da Milano and his contemporaries. I most definitely did not care for his "Christ of the Apocalypse" though! Christ with flowing grey hair and beard, and a frown on - no way, that is NOT my image of Christ - I prefer the peaceful loving dude, thank you very much!! One other painting I will mention is Francesco Grannaci's 1509 The Virgin of the "Cintola", which shows St. Michael (the archangel, I presume) wearing armour but also with rainbow shaded wings...War and Peace? Seemed an odd combination, I thought.
But, of course, David stole the show...sigh...sheer perfection in marble, this statue is a wondrous thing to behold.
It was surprisingly dark at close to seven when I came out of the Accademia. This happens to me at home too, the darkness abruptly comes early one night. But it was nice strolling around in the twilight. After a while, I went back to the apartment, had some pasta for supper (ok, who am I kidding - I totally gorged myself on fresh ravioli stuffed with spinach and ricotta!!) Had a glass of wine and drank a toast to my family, my friends, God, Italy, and myself! Then decided I better have one last linger in the Loggia at night before I leave this amazing city tomorrow, so out I head.
Ok, so here's the funny thing that happened on the way to the Loggia...
I stopped on Borgo San Jacopo to admire the absolutely stunning chess sets in a shop window (MVH will remember this shop, I think!) One of the sets was the Medici vs Pazzi, on a marble board with horse head legs (legs as in to lift it off a regular table, not legs to reach the floor). As I stood there, along came an older Italian gentleman...I'm thinking in his 70s, maybe 80s, but I am a terrible judge of age. He starts talking about the chess sets, and at first I assume he must be the shop owner, and think oh dear I don't want to mislead him into thinking I am interested in buying one of his sets. They are utterly gorgeous and I would LOVE to have one, but...the aforementioned Medici/Pazzi set? 5920.00 euro says the price tag...yowsers! Not in my lifetime! Anyway, he was not the shop owner. We chatted for a while (he spoke halting English), he asked if I was a student, I said no, just here on holiday...then he asked if I was a student back home (apparently he was blind or senile because I don't look that young!) He also thought my cross (around my neck) was "so little...but is cute" and wanted to know if I was religious. I hesitated because although I feel spiritual, I still don't really think of myself as "Religious", but then said yes, although not Catholic. Ah, Protestant, he said, what are you protesting? (He then said that he protests when he eats in a restaurant and the food is bad.) Anyway, he was just off to find a restaurant that was still open, and wondered had I eaten yet and did I want to join him? If I hadn't just stuffed myself with pasta, I might have been tempted! But I said that yes, I had already eaten but grazie. Then a friend of his came along so I scootched away. Too funny...and strange to receive such a random dinner invitation, considering how much the older generation over here seems to keep to themselves.
Anyway, I may post again before I get home...if I get too bored in the closet sized Yotel toom tomorrow night! Although as I recall, I couldn't access my blog last time, so might just harass family and friends by email. And there is not much to do in the Gatwick airport so hopefully at least one or two of them will answer back otherwise I might just die of boredom!! :)