21 December 2009

Affascinante ("Charming")

A vision not uncommon in the south of Italy, especially Sicily, or a scene from a movie; however, in the bigger cities in the middle and north of the country it is a method of passing something along to a neighbor that is rarely still used.

It's caught my attention. In fact, in Florence, the only person I have seen actually employ this method is my neighbor across the street. I have waited patiently to capture a photo of her unraveling her rope on a stick with the basket attached from her fourth-floor flat to someone on the street that is delivering flowers, bread, a giornale ("newspaper"), or some other item. He or she announces his or her arrival with a whistle or a "yoohoo," and the blinds and window are opened and the rope is unraveled to the street.

What else I have seen is a similar method used when delivering furniture or when a person is moving in or out. A little more modern technology is used, which looks like a ladder with a motorized box which you fill with your goodies and up or down the ladder it goes.

So efficient and practical. Considering most of us do not live on the pianterreno ("ground floor"), it does make life a bit easier, even if it is not a modern-day convenience.

It's such a simple thing that I find particularly charming.

I have attempted to capture a photo from the woman's window to the street including the woman in the window and the person on the street, but it is impossible because the scene is too near to my camera to get that wide-of-an-angle shot.

-- Josslyn 'Giosalina'
Florence, Italy

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