Monday, December 21, 2009

Gore, Oh Al Gore, Where Art Thou Gore...?

Bad news from the homefront. The worst snow storm in decades has halted air travel for the NE and Mid Atlantic regions in the U.S. Jim will not be able to join me in this dreamy holiday time. So sad for him, he was so looking forward to returning to Verona, and I was so looking forward to sharing this great time with him.

Jim spend 4 1/2 years of his early US Army life in Verona, Verona is where we met, dated, married and started our family 31 years ago. We will spend Christmas apart, the first time in 31 years but we will, like many other times in our lives together, make the best of what is handed to us. We will make lemonade! or like Margherita says, we will make limoncello!

It started snowing once again this morning over most of northern Italy, including Verona. Time to head out again this afternoon to the city center to take a closer look of Teatro Romano, Santo Stefano, Castel San Pietro, Ponte Pietra, and Juliet's Balcony.

Gore, oh Al Gore, where art thou? Warm it is not....

There is so much to see, and to walk in the snow it will be a treat. The Teatro Romano was built in 100 B.C., 2100 years ago!!! What does that mean to the people that walk by every day on their way to work or school? What does it mean to live in the houses hanging on the rocky cliffs behing the Teatro? How does living your life everyday in the proximity of such ancient testimony of human art impact people's lives? How has it impacted my life? Ponte Pietra, Castel San Pietro, Teatro Romano...they were daily sights for me on my way to school...

A few steps to the left of Teatro Romano, a narrow set of steps starts off Via Castel San Pietro, a most romantic setting for young lovers. The winding steep marble steps take you all the way to Castel San Pietro right above Teatro Romano. I didn't walk up the steps today, it was still snowing hard, and I didn't think it was a great idea. But I have walked the winding steps many times in my younger years, and the reward is always great. The view of Verona from Castel San Pietro is breathtaking, the red roofs, the Adige river, the churches and their steeples, the walls of Castelvecchio....

Time to cross Ponte Pietra, my favorite and the oldest bridge over the river Adige. I met a lone young woman, couldn't have been more than 21 years old, from Australia, who is spending her summer vacation in Europe. I couldn't help thinking she was my daughter's age, wasn't her mother worried for her daughter a world away travelling alone? She had missed Juliet's balcony in Via Cappello, so I helped her with directions. I headed there as well later and I met up with her again. Glad she could see it, no tourist should ever leave Verona without seeing the balcony.

At Juliet's house I wrote my love message on my business card....and left it on the wall with million others.

Al Gore, it is still snowing and it seems the entire world is covered in a blanket of white stuff!

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