Much of my four months spent in Italy is beyond photo-capture, or really the limitations of language. But certainly parts of my time there could be visually displayed, so here it is: four of my favorite qualities of Orvieto, divided into light, land, height, and faces. Prego.
Dawn till dusk: soft light, slicing light, shadow light, light, light, light.
Within and around the Orvieto walls, gardens await us. Vineyards, olive groves, massive cemeteries--all beckoning. What's cobblestone without greenery?
With the slam of a car door, the tourist trudges through the domestic park’s sidewalks. He approaches the Eastern-most Orvieto with slow stomps and incredible huffs. He brandishes a plastic rod and extends it like a telescope, attaching an iPhone to its end. Out juts the pole over the green abyss, wonderlessly swift. He penetrates the clouds and clicks away, taking without seeing, and flees the ransacked scene.
Below the walls, callused hands sing to the soil. The harvest is only the centerpiece while patience provides a history of dedication that pours over grateful tongues, evidence of endless limbs in one magnetic embrace.
Seated atop volcanic tuff, Orvieto rises above its almost vertical cliffs, one thousand feet high. Sometimes we admire the view, other times we awake in a cloud. There is no discrepancy between air and sky.
"When you are understood, you are at home." --John O'Donohue