Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Gubbio, Italy

Vacation is on my mind, as I have a mini-vacation coming in a week or so. But it made me remember being half a world away last October. And how I loved everything I saw. This is the square in Gubbio in front of the entrance to the Hotel Relais, where we stayed.

The entrace is through the second arch behind the umbrellas which haven't been unfurled on this particular day because of the strong breeze. We parked the car outside the old city and walked to the hotel (their instructions) and it was incredible. The stone streets were a maze, and most shops were closed, but we looked in all the windows. I tried to imagine what would be in an antique store which was an antiquity itself.

Gubbio, and the buildings above, were taken over by the Nazis. Thanks to all the WWII movies I watch, I can easily envision the banners with the swastika hanging on the face of the buildings. When the Allies got to Gubbio, they had no desire to destroy the town--they understood it's historical value. So, they fired one "unarmed" shell into the town. If you look closely you can see the place it hit above (from the top left window, count three over and look just below the third window). The Nazis took the hint and scarpered out of there and Gubbio survived.

We heard this story from the locals who frequented the small bar just inside the second arch, which is also one entrance to the hotel. I mean to look that up in the history books.

Have I mentioned I want to go back to Italy?

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