Oltrarno orphans

Every day in Florence seemed like a special day.  Our last days in the Oltrarno (the Florence neighborhood south of the Arno River), we rambled through the neighborhood as if we were trying to walk every street and take in every sight.  Who knew if we would ever return?

We always have our cameras with us, snapping away at whatever treasured memento we see.  Somehow we usually overlook the “big picture” photos in favor of smaller, observed details.  That has its drawbacks, but our photos of a place definitely record our point of view.

Often those photos are stand-alone photos, not really belonging to any group.  We call them “orphans.”  We think that putting this little collection of “orphan” photos together gives a true impression of our daily Oltrarno walks

Of all the wonderful shops in Florence, Romanzeria won our award for the best signage, display and concept.  The translation is “books by weight for every taste”.  A smaller sign in the window clarified how many euros the used books cost per gram.

We’ve never been anywhere with so many wonderful specialty shops. However, photographing those shops proved almost impossible.  Lighting in the windows killed almost every photo we took and that was disappointing.

One of the few photos that worked was of Mannina, a store specializing in handmade shoes.  We were interested in the use of space to display the finished shoes, tools, old wooden bench, and mementos on the top shelf.

San Miniato al Monte presented a good example of the word “facade” – according to the dictionary: “an outward appearance that is maintained to conceal a less pleasant or creditable reality.”

Sometimes our walks lasted so long that we needed a little “snack” to tide us over.  We discovered the charming little wine bar, Le Volpi e L’uva, tucked away on a side street near the Pitti Palace.

Joe drank Dolimiti beer, and Beth had a ginger beer.  The little appetizer sandwiches were just enough to see us through till dinner.

Photographing the old and the new for an interesting composition.

Our AirBnB apartment was just a few doors down from Teatro Goldoni.  The theatre dates back to 1817.  When the theatre opened it had 1600 seats.

We loved our month-long stay in Florence – half in the Oltrarno area.  Our photos will be wonderful reminders not just of the big museums, the majestic churches and rich artwork.  We’ll remember fondly little shops, the out-of-the-way wine bar, and the theatre just down the street.


May 2018

About simpletravelourway

Beth and Joe enjoy simple travel.
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5 Responses to Oltrarno orphans

  1. I love the little treasures you find in off-the-beaten-bath meanders. That little shop photo captures what seems a bygone era. Nice!

  2. Memories caught in a photo – the best treasure to take home with you, I think. I bet the aroma of the shoe-maker’s shop was amazing. – Susan

  3. plaidcamper says:

    Thanks for these “orphan” photographs – your selections make for an interesting and unseen view of Florence, and all the lovely sights, sounds, and tastes (a very civilized snack!) paint a wonderful neighbourhood picture.

  4. Love this idea of sharing those photos that don’t really fit into any story you want to tell. Your facade photo is great but, like you guys, I’m really taken with the idea of a book store that sells by the gram. If travel teaches you nothing else, there’s always a totally unique way to accomplish a task! Anita

  5. Did you have a look inside the building with the interesting façade?

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