“It starts with the simplest of things. An idea. No plans. A beautiful day. When do we ever have full control? This is the time. Take it and go.”
That’s what I found, in a clothing catalog of all things, and cut it out and pasted it to the front of my travel journal. And that’s how every day here is in Florence. Beautiful, and completely out of my control. That scares me as much as it thrills me. Every moment is such an adventure. Finding my way around and communicating are new challenges that I welcome, and I’m learning fast. I feel like a child, wide-eyed and wondering, and using the simplest of sentences. “Grazie per la cena.” “Vado a scuola.” “Come sta?” [“Thank you for dinner.” “I’m going to school.” “How are you?”] But to think that when I got off the plane I spoke only three or four words, total, in Italian (plus the range of pasta vocabulary, of course), I am proud. Jeff and I were talking about wonder in an email before I left town. If one wants to release their grip on rationality, come to Italy. The Duomo, San Lorenzo, Santa Maria Novella, Santa Croce, San Vitale, San Apollinare Nuovo… these were not places built to a God we can rationally prove. These were built out of a deep and penetrating faith in a God who they saw in every tiny aspect of daily life. How I wish that for just one day, I could worship with that kind of faith.
Firenze… Firenze is a magical city. I wish all of you reading this could be here with me to share it.