On a Morning Walk

The area around Florence is still my favorite: there is something special about the Tuscan light. Barack Obama, Corriere della Sera 7/8/10

Each morning I go on a long walk along the Arno. It is then that I find the light at its best. I walk across the river on one bridge and back across another. All told there are six bridges across the Arno in Florence.

At the Ponte Alle Grazie: Originally built in 1227, the Ponte Alle Grazie is the oldest of the bridges crossing the Arno and the longest. In 1944, it was, destroyed by the Nazis in retreat from the advancing Allied army. It was rebuilt in 1953.

A shady park along the River, a welcome spot on the hot sunny days. I go there to read on a bench in the afternoon.

Constructed in 1345 on the narrowest point of the river, the legendary Ponte Vecchio is the only bridge to have survived the invasion of German troops in 1944—said to be on orders from Hitler. Today there are shops along each side occupied by jewelers, art dealers and souvenir sellers.

The buildings along the banks of the Arno from the Ponte Vecchio. The range of bright colors on the buildings in Italy are unique of my experience and they are at their best in the bright morning light.

A treat in a café at the end of the walk.