copyright © Sophia Khan
Italy is more than its monuments. More than its museums, churches, piazzas, and ruins.
There is a beauty to Italy that is sometimes just around the corner from its more obvious charms. One that is found in weathered cobblestones, peeling paint, spalling stones. One that is seen where laundry hangs to dry in the sunlight outside a window. One that is heard when two women exchange pleasantries and laughs with each other, through the upper floor windows of their opposite homes. One that is observed in the dedicated hands of the barista, the violin maker, the jeweler, the farmer, each leading their simple and content lives in the backdrop of immense beauty and history.
It is perhaps in finding such places, such people, that we relate to our own lives most. Lives that are not perfect, not always grand and glorious, but often embedded with everyday simplicity and delights, comings and goings, and slow, casual, memorable moments, conversations, and revelations. Perhaps Italy can teach us to cherish this more.
In celebration of all this, all that makes up life, place, and time, is an unadorned view of House No. 50 in Ferrandina, in the south of Italy. A place like so many others in Italy where the boundaries between public and private are blurred, where outside and inside coalesce. Where meaning lies not in knowing the history of the site, the architect, the street name, or where it lies on a map, but how it moves us. How it reminds us to see beauty in the unadorned, simple and intimate world that so often mirrors our own.
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