I Love Italy

Saturday morning, we went to the ledge and saw the valley covered in fog. Because of its thickness, a little house at the bottom was barely visible. As we drove, the fog began to clear as the wind picked up, allowing for glimpses of the mountains. Soon, it was swirling around the hills and valleys, and then, it was gone.

Once in Orvieto, the streets were lined with the stereotypical Asian tourists. Even though we learned about the city’s importance, bus-loads of people surprised me.

Our first real stop was St. Patrick’s Well. It was given that name because the people coming from Ireland constantly said that it looked a lot like a cave to which St. Patrick would retreat. The saint never actually came to the city, but because everyone referred to it as St. Patrick’s Well, they officially name it that. We went down, and I had a lot of fun. It was a strange thing, but there is a staircase going down a little bridge, and a staircase going up. There aren’t two circles, two wells. It was sort of like putting together two springs or two spirals. They make one center, but two separate “ways.” The reason for the well was because the city was afraid of being put under a siege, so they built wells—there were 2 others—to make sure they couldn’t be cut off from water. Even though it was so deep, because of the grate opening at the top and the numerous “windows,” it wasn’t dark.

In the Duomo, the first thing we talked about was in the side chapel. The tour guide explained the frescoes  which told the story of the Last Judgment. I’ve never seen anything like it, mostly because I’ve never seen that scene pained on anything. It was very violent and it seemed to come to life. Later, we were able to see the relics from the Eucharistic miracle which occurred not too far from Orvieto—where a priest, after performing the Transubstantiation, broke the host, which began to bleed onto the corporal (the cloth). Both the host and the cloth were the relic in the chapel opposite the chapel with the frescoes.  Another interesting point about the church was that it was constructed in both Gothic and Romanesque styles. The ceiling is Romanesque (except above the altar), because of the wooden cross-beams. The windows and doorways were a mix. Some were rounded at the top (Romanesque), while others came to a point (Gothic).

After lunch…

…and wandering the streets, we had a chance to take some pictures.

As Tyler lay on the ledge,

he looked at us, and his glasses weren’t on his face. They had fallen down to the bottom of the wall, around a 50 foot drop.

They ran over to get them, but the property was private. Thankfully, the family was there and let them inside the gate.

His glasses landed in a soft patch of grass and were fine.

On to the wine tasting:

Picture the most beautiful scene out of a movie of a Tuscan winery, the wind whispering and the sun setting in the distance, the reds and greens of the wines, the smell of the food and wine mixing together in harmony. Please believe that it was much more incredible than that. It took my breath away. I have never been to a more perfect, picturesque place in all of my life. Before, Italy was beautiful. This, however, was so much more surreal, so much more real. What I’ve seen in films and what I’ve imagined would never have prepared me for this. I was completely and totally content. The wine only made the experience better. We tasted four wines, accompanied by bread, cheese, and salami, as he explained how everything was made, what grapes came from where, why a wine is called what it is called. Come to find out, my favorite wine was named after his son: “Giovanni.” After that, I fell in love; I fell in love with Italy, with the scenery, the atmosphere, the people, the food, the wine, everything. People here in general are so welcoming and friendly. I understand why is has become such a popular place to visit. These regions have opened my eyes to the wonder that is Italy.

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One Comment Add yours

  1. abhiveerina says:

    Emma, first of all your pictures are amazing! It was interesting to read your description of the clouds from the ledge in Todi and then to actually see your beautiful pictures. I really liked your description of the Duomo in Orvieto as well because I felt exactly the same about the frescoes of the Last Judgement. It was so violent and scary and surprising for a church environment in my opinion. It’s also funny that you say it almost comes to life because I specifically remember one of the paintings where the people were actually trying to leave the painting. The lunch was pretty good, it just took quite a while :). Reading your opinion of the wine tasting was weird for me because it was almost like reading my own thoughts! I felt exactly the same way and thought that it was kind of the moment that made Italy for me in general. There wasn’t a moment of it that had a bad memory or was forgettable. It was surreal.

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