The Colosseum, Michelangelo’s David, Tower of Pisa, the Vatican, Tuscany, beautiful coastal towns – Italy boasts a resplendent array of remarkable imagery.
Three weeks crisscrossing the country, taking hundreds of photographs and only two things kept me from maxing out my digital memory card.
Most importantly, was the desire to just be in the moment, and trust the experiences to my senses and memory.
I also challenged myself to capture photographically who, not simply what, makes the Italian culture so special. Two favorite images featured above accomplish this, I believe.
The country’s most traditional pastime may be gathering, talking and watching. These local women happened to be chatting on public benches along a side street in Monterosso al Mare — though the scene appeared typical of each city and town. Impressionable, too, was the ageless blend of people walking, dining, working and playing together; and genuinely enjoying one another’s company.
It was entertaining enough to watch as the Tonka-toy sized pickup truck slithered through the narrow back streets of the Cinque Terre town of Vernazza. Once it stopped and the delivery guy hustled about with his load of produce, the scene spontaneously captured a story unique in both culture and history. Everywhere, fresh, healthy, local food seemed a prideful characteristic of meals in homes and restaurants.
Though only a couple of snapshots of Italy’s photogenic people and culture, for me at least these and a few dozen more best represent the fullest travel experience.