|Our view of San Lorenzo from our room at the Hotel Paris, Firenze|
Remember the 1985 film adaptation of A Room with a View? Recalling Lucy Honeychurch’s despair, I’d booked a room with a view (#336) at the (confusingly misnamed) Hotel Paris. What could be more romantic?
The best lines and scenes from the movie were lifted directly from the book, although the cinematic Lucy (Helena Bonham Carter) was more spunky and outspoken than her literary model. The novel was both more subtle and satirical. It was surprisingly timeless and humorous.
Like Lucy, I had traveled to Italy from the English countryside.
My British in laws had rented a house in Somerset to celebrate their 75th and 80th birthdays.
Happy Birthdays, N&T!
|Our view of the Duomo from the Hotel Paris, Firenze|
Out our Tuscan window,
church bells rang
and a horse-drawn carriage
clopped down the road
towards the Duomo
(our view with a craned neck).
Forster’s prose rose
above the din of American tourists.
(Snookie had been filming
Jersey Shore on location
only the week before,
|My parents in Fiesole|
Borrowing a page from Forster,
“The first fine afternoon drive up to Fiesole.”
We joined my parents,
celebrating their 50th anniversary in Italy,
for lunch in this hill town overlooking Florence.
My dad and I might look Italian,
but we’re native New Yorkers.
From him, I inherited my love of Italy
and passion for exploring the world and photography.
|View of Florence from the Pensione's terrace|
As we waited for lunch at Pensione Bencista in Fiesole, dark clouds gathered over Florence ominously.
Thunder rumbled and lightning flashed over the Tuscan hills.
My sixteen-year-old son, an experienced mountaineer,
pointed out that metal chairs under a canvas awning offered little protection from electrocution.
Fiesole cut short our excursion . . . just like in A Room with a View. I thought of the poor Italian girl (evicted from the carriage for kissing the driver) and George (by his reckless choice) walking the five miles back to Florence. It could have been my son and I, had we set off sooner as planned.
|View of Florence from the Uffizi Gallery|
|South Harpswell, Maine|