Sunday, July 28, 2002

Enrico IV is the only one smiling. Among thousands of immaculate renaissance faces clothing the walls of Florence's Ufizzi gallery, Enrico IV alone shows any signs of happiness or joy. In his very formal portrait, wearing a large poofy jacket and tights, he ispositively jolly. His neighbors--from Cupid, Venus, and Baccus to Jesus and Mary to Rembrandt to scores of Italian heads of state--wear most often a solemn, detached demeanor, broken only by love or anguish. Was everyone really this morose during the renaissance, or, as Josh suggested to me, were smiles simply out of vogue?
once again, very little time to post. my mood: elated. a quick list of highlights:
an allnight sunset melting into sunrise over the atlantic enroute from New York to Brussels
drove mopeds through the rolling hills of tuscany, through vineyards and olive groves and vineyards and olive groves
mass in santa maria novella
shabbat services in perhaps the largest, most ornate synagogue I have ever encountered, in florence.
gelato. fresh pasta. more gelato. more fresh pasta...mmm.....
swimming in the mediterranean after hiking along the cliffs of the cinque terra.