Village Life in Italy — The Walk to Coffee - A Pictorial — Part 8

Every day without fail, I walk up the lane to the piazza near the church, down the steep road, through the arch, down another very steep (20% gradient) road, and then off to the right to climb a cobbled street to the main piazza. There I find my favorite coffee shop seemingly always open. There is solace, if I needed it, in having a favorite within easy walking distance, and often full of people I know who offer a greeting and a smile.

2. This 9 inch hibiscus and it correspondingly gargantuan leaves is by far the largest I have ever seen.

3. This small recessed shrine sits along the path to coffee. The flowers are fabric, but the sentiment is real enough for those living in the neighborhood.

Torre dei Monaldeschi

4. Torre dei Monaldeschi served as a lookout and anchor for the village defenses as far back as the 11th century. High on the hill, warriors were capable of seeing any approaching marauders from a great distance and thence, giving the defenders time to prepare.

5.The stairs that go no where are actually a remnant of a previous architectural incarnation. No doubt the church connected to the tower in times past, but even though this door and its beginnings of a stairway are purposeless, they have been retained out of a reverence for history and commitment to preservation.

6. This archway up into the piazza by the church and the Torre dei Monaldeschi looks too small for a car at only 1 meter 70 centimeters, or 5" 7'. Nevertheless, European cars of all descriptions go through all the time. I have seen however, one American visitor freeze at the sight of its narrow walls. He ended up parking in the square at the town center.

7. I don’t think I have ever seen pomegranate growing before. This is a young tree, so it won’t be prime for raiding for a couple of years.

8. A Catholic nation that somehow manages to support family planning, though in a limited, and rather pricey way. Condoms come six to a box for 8–10 €.

The Insomnia Cafe has been my go-to stop since the first time I drove into the village. Run in tandem by a brother and sister, it boasts splendid woodwork done by their father. Double Latte — 2.50 €, Small sandwich (tramezzino) — 1.20 €, .5 liter carbonated water — .80 €. The coffee is delicious.

Writer, ESL instructor, editor, traveler, seasonal ex-pat— my life is both an intentional and serendipitous circumstance. Motto — “Buy the ticket, and go!”

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