It shouldn’t be surprising that churches in coastal communities have ornamentation that speaks to saintly protection of boatmen and fishermen. Here in Monaco’s huge cathedral (where Princess Grace was married and now lies buried) this saint carries the protected craft out of harm’s way. Even in my small fishing-centric town of Gloucester, MA, the beautiful Portuguese-neighborhood church features a statue of the Blessed Virgin cradling a ship in her arms.
March 7, 2014
March 6, 2014
There’s a wonderful little walkway that takes you from the base of the busy Paseo del Prado up into the peaceful Parque del Retiro. I’d pass along it each morning as I was heading out for my run in the beautiful park. The passageway is lined with booksellers. Here you can see one earlybird vendor just opening up his stall for the day’s business.
March 5, 2014
Three years ago, on a visit to Málaga’s mercado central, Jay and I bought two of the ripest, juiciest pears we’ve ever had in our lives. We ate them in a park near Picasso’s birthplace and dripped juice all over ourselves. So good, European fruit. Especially ripe pears, which are so hard to find in the US of A. (The ones here, I find, are either rock hard or mush.) So on a return visit, we found the same vendor and told him that we still remembered the pears he’d sold us on our last trip. And we wanted the same, pears to be eaten “today.” He reached into a basket behind his display and came up with two beauties, offering them for us to feel. They did not disappoint.
March 4, 2014
It’s always good to have an exit plan. Whether you’re James Bond or just a tourist like me. I hope the exit isn’t through that little hole. Paging Lewis Carroll. (I took this photo to honor my friend Nick’s Italian nickname, Uscita Sottopassagio, a sign seen in many an Italian train station to indicate that the exit is via an underground passage, a sign that many Italians ignore as they blithely walk across the tracks.)
March 3, 2014
Even though it’s cloudy and gray, the seacoast off the Cinque Terre still fascinates. The color of the water. The forbidding cliffs. Jay and I sailed into this small town on Halloween and happily met up with my friend Antonio whom I had not seen in some 25 years. As he knew the town (he lives an hour away in Lucca), he led us to some lovely spots. Like this one.
March 2, 2014
How glowing and majestic this restored building in Old Havana looks. Situated squarely in the most touristed part of the city, it makes the crumbling blocks of humble apartment houses where most of the Habaneros live look even more run down.