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Published: November 2nd 2010
Mother and child
I have forgotten who painted this...will add later
Day 7 Spoleto
Bill was still under the weather, so I went out to explore on my own. It was rainy with thunder and lightning in the distance. There were still crowds in the streets, however, and cafes and restaurants were packed.
I decided to walk a loop down the hill to ruins of the Roman Amphitheater (not the theater near our hotel), along the river, and back up to our apartment. I started out by going to the costume and fabric Museum, which was closed….then on to a few churches (there must be over 50 in the area!) which were also closed.
By this time I was the only one walking around in the rain. I came to a high wall, and went over to read the information plaque. (All the historical information here is in both English and Italian, and is well written). The wall I was looking at had components from the Umbrian times, Romans, and modern builders. It was beautiful and fascinating…
I continued on towards the amphitheater, and realized, when I came out into a square I recognized, that I had somehow walked past this giant ruin….going back I realized it was
The tower is being redone..it isn't very spectacular..built of repurposed Roman stone...
covered with the construction cloth they use over facades here while working on buildings. I walked a around for a few minutes, but the place was completely deserted and there wasn’t much I could see, so I headed back out and came upon a wonderful thing: the city has completed one of two escalators from the river level to the top of the hill! By then it was raining hard, so the almost 10 minute covered ride was much appreciated. From the exit at the top it was only a few minutes walk home.
Day 8 Spoleto
Bill was back in action today, so we walked to the big supermarket at the bottom of the hill, shopped and took the escalator back up. We had a beer and pizza in a café near the apartment, and then visited the grounds of the fort/prison/museum on the top of the hill, the cathedral (where I had been on Monday), and returned to the apartment, where I left Bill and headed back down to visit the 4th Century church of San Salvatore, which is on the other side of the autostrade.
I wove my way down tiny streets and stairways
back to the river (which btw is only a dry riverbed…don’t know why there’s no water). There I followed the most direct route on my map and came to an intersection full of people and police cars. I asked about the direction of the church and was told it was just ahead. People were streaming down the hill towards me, a crowd of mostly older people mixed with many military personnel.
When I got up to the church, I realized that some kind of memorial service had just gotten out. The cardinal was there, as were many dignitaries and soldiers. I found a cameraman who started to explain the event to me and was soon helped by a priest. Today is the national day of mourning in Italy. After I admired the stunningly simple interior, I walked through the city cemetery outside, and then to a nearby monastery (closed) and back home in the dusky evening. Cooked dinner, drank wine…Another great day!
Tomorrow we take the train for a day trip to Assisi.
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