The stories of my life on a little island in the middle of the Mediterranean sea ... and my occasional adventures beyond these shores.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

There’s something about Italy

Yes, there’s something about Italy and I don’t quite know what it is -whether it is the rolling Tuscan hills or its crumbling fortresses; the grandiose domes of its churches or the refreshing tinkle of its many fountains. What is certain is that there’s an inherent charm that seems to stem from its diversity. So perhaps it no wonder that its cities, landscapes and even obscure villages whose names are left out of all the guidebooks seem to have come to an unspoken agreement: to seduce the unwary traveller into leaving a piece of his heart and a part of his soul somewhere along its boot-shaped length. Italy has captured the imagination of countless poets, artists, writers and adventurers. But, you might ask, what is it about it that  you seek?
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And my answer would be ‘I don’t know’. I don’t know what draws me to this land. For I do not claim to be a poet, and an artist I most definitely am not. So would adventurer be a more fitting description? Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t. I’m just an {older} girl with a camera and a pen; a wanderer’s soul and a passion for eavesdropping on whispers of the past.
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Yes, I am spellbound by Pisa and Siena and Venice (and Rome and Florence and … you get the picture) but I am equally mesmerised by those secret villages where no tourists venture and which even time seems to have forgotten. It’s been too long since my last visit and, everyday, I hear the siren call of this beautiful land a little bit stronger,   knowing full well that before too long I will have to break my shackles and answer it, so that I will, once again, be able to walk on ancient cobbled streets, beneath gravity-defying medieval towers, hoping to discover its secrets and trying to find that part of me which I had left behind on my previous visit. Or maybe it was the one before that. Or maybe it was a hundred years ago or even a thousand. Because time is relative here and Italy never feels like a stranger but more like an old friend with whom I can pick up a surreptitious conversation at exactly the same point we had left it the last time we met.
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I am a dreamer and, like all dreamers, I live somewhere on the border between fantasy and reality. In Italy, the fantastic is never too far beneath the surface and I seem to tune it to it intuitively. Maybe that is the lure which, time and again, draws me there. Or maybe it’s something more mundane: like the food, the wine and that typically Italian outlook on life epitomised by the now immortal phrase: la dolce vita.
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Oh Italy, even after all that soul-searching I am not any closer to pin-pointing where your magic lies. Which is probably why I keep on falling in love with you.
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10 comments:

  1. I have Italy at home, now even the whole day ! My husband is Italian and I know the country quite well. I have spent 15 years each year at the Garda Lake, have supported the (very loud) family we toured around Italy and now I have enough ! I agree it's very beautiful and people are charming (but loud) and even my husband doesn't want to live there anymore, lol !

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  2. Hello Loree,

    We can identify with this completely. Italy steals your heart, breaks it, but never leaves your soul. One lifetime is insufficient to experience all that it has to offer and, no matter how often one returns, there is always something that one has missed, another layer to be peeled away. It is a country of endless fascination and beauty, great beauty.

    Your photographs capture some of the many beguiling moods and faces of Italy. The tints and tones, the light and shade, they are all so bewitching. Yes, return soon......and so shall we!

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  3. I don't like to say this in front of Remi but...I never dreamed of living in France...it is Italy that has my heart. It is a perfect land for dreamers like us!

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  4. DEAR LOREE I CAN SEE WHY ITALY IS SUCH A LOVELY PLACE TO VISIT. YOUR WORDS ARE JUST AS BEAUTIFUL AS WELL. THANK YOU FOR SHARING SOME OF ITALY WITH ME. HUGS!

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  5. ARE YOU There now?I was CAPTURED by HER charm years ago............it has NEVER left me.The people make it even more special.........or they did.Times are changing and every time I go its more and more like the USA!Which can be good.......(form a line please) and could have it's down falls.The HISTORY is there but you have that too in MALTA and FRANCE.......what is it?Good question if you find out let me know!XOXOX

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  6. Beautiful short jaunt through Italy - thanks for bringing us along. And I get how you feel because I feel that same way about Greece :))

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  7. I felt like this before spending a year in Rome to study, but I felt a bit lost in the chaos of Rome. There were other unpleasant experiences including a racist roommate, and that killed the beauty of Rome for me. I do hope to feel like you do - again.

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  8. I enjoyed visiting Italy through your mesmerizing post. Thanks for the tour!

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  9. Siena would be my personal favourite... Wonderful shots!

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  10. I really relate to this post Loree - there is certainly a unique charm about Italy. You say you are not a poet but I disagree - your prose is very poetic and you paint beautiful visual images with your words to accompany your beautiful photographs!

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Thanks for stopping by. I read and appreciate every one of your comments. However, I prefer to go back to your blog and leave a message rather than reply to your comments here.

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