I build homes in humans and find love in buildings and architecture. Last summer I uncovered Florence, and Florence built a forever home in my heart.
Florence was architectural elegance at its finest. Cobbled streets and aged buildings– never ending walls of brick. It left me in awe and constant shock. I was in sensory overload (the smells and the sounds and the sites and the textures…).
But as I climbed the steps of Giotto’s Campanile, somewhere along my 414 step ascent into the clouds, I stopped. It wasn’t a moment of realization or clarity or a yearning desire to capture beauty… it was embarrassingly, a moment of fatigue. I, a young, sprightly, twenty one year old had run out of energy and was facing a mild run in with claustrophobia. So in a moment of despair (and sheer genius, now looking back), I shoved my camera into the space created by a missing brick in the wall, collapsed onto my legs and adjusted my auto- focus lens so as to simply avoid tumbling back against those behind me.
I, by no means displayed grace in that moment. The product of my collapse, however, never fails to remind me of the grace and beauty Florence’s buildings and landscape carry.