“One belongs to New York instantly. One belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years.” – Thomas Wolfe
The Cab Ride
Yesterday was Father’s Day, a day when sons and daughters take their dads to the ball game, have a nice cookout in the backyard and give cards and gifts expressing their appreciation for all that dad’s do. I couldn’t be with my dad this father’s day weekend, but I want him to know that I, too, appreciate all he’s done and continues to do for me, the strange middle son.
It’s not easy to describe my dad, which I think is a great quality in and of itself. He’s quiet, witty, generally impatient, annoyingly intelligent and incredibly kind. He gives and gives and takes nothing in return. He answers the puzzles on “Wheel of Fortune” way too early. He stuffs his pockets full of dog treats so that all the puppy friends along Gardenview Drive can enjoy a treat with our dogs. While driving to church, he’ll curse under his breath at the woman who’s driving too slow. He sacrifices his time, his health and his sanity on a daily basis, continuing to put off retirement so that his family can travel to places like Italy. He leaves notes on the kitchen counter every morning, letting my mom know which dogs pooped and that he loves her.
Like most times in my life, I’m a day late (and always a dollar short). But I wanted to share some photos of my mom and dad and my brother John and his girlfriend, Jess, from our trip for this Father’s Day because I know that buildings and light and shadows and Gondola Guys are cool and serve as great reminders of things seen during a trip, but what’s really important is who you saw it with. I’m so lucky to be a part of my family and so thankful for their support. Love you, Dad.
…it’s time for us to part.
Simply stated, there is no other place in the world like Venice. We only spent a day in the “City of Water” but Venice and the weather made it count. This city is so photogenic, it knows it. The entire afternoon, I could almost hear whispers coming from the shadows, “psst…now look over there and wait for the light to move,” only the whispers were in Italian so for all I know they were saying, “pssst…aren’t you surprised by all the hot dogs here? Me too!”
My favorite shot in this post is the affectionately titled, “Gondola Guy in Hallway Place” which you’ll see toward the end, and it’s my favorite because when I walked by that archway I could feel the city grin back at me, like it knew all along that I’d eventually find it. I was only there shooting for about 10 minutes when Gondola Guy walked out, turned around and walked back in. Gotcha.
A chronological glimpse at one day in Venice…
As much as I love black and white photography, sometimes there are images and more specifically, places, that beg to be shown in all their vivid glory. Italy is one of these places. So much fun light.
I’m splitting up these color posts into the cities we visited; Florence, Venice and Rome. A majority of our time was spent in Florence, so those are the photos you will see here. Be sure to check back because though the Venice/Rome shots are hot. Molto Caldo!
To my family, do not be discouraged. I will put a post together featuring your beautiful mugs in the days to come.
A taste of Florence…
Nestled in the side streets of Florence lies one of the most incredible food stuff spots in the world, at least according to me, but I’ve basically been exposed to Cub Foods and Harris Teeters. Trust me though, it’s amazing. A result of the risanamento or restructuring of Florence late in the 19th century (thank you Wikipedia), Mercato Centrale is exactly what it sounds like, Florence’s Central Market (you’re welcome for the translation).
Packed full of fresh fruit, vegetables, meats, pastas, sauces, sandwiches, cheeses, spices, coffees, wines, oils, balsamic deliciousness, etc., you can find just about anything to make some stellar homemade local fare.