Small Roman Squares, Rome, Italy
Oh, those Roman squares, I thought, and my mood changed immediately! They are her outdoor living rooms. I was sitting down and I felt my spirit uplifted looking at so much beauty around me as I listened to Isabella speaking of the logic of cats. The Piazza di Pietra in the middle of town doesn’t have anything objectively beautiful, but in its only café, La Caffettiera, much-loved by Romans and its politicians, you sit, observe and enjoy.
Colours, people, melodic language, Campari with soda, the young woman that rides by on her bicycle, the group of nuns rushing past, in a hurry to get to their monastery, the group of young people at the next table, laughing and enjoying the bright sunshine, and happiness, a constant happiness.
At the end of the square is the temple of Hadrian, with its restored Corinthian columns, inside of which is located the stock exchange, with its state-of-the-art technology. Before the stock exchange, it was used as the papal Customs, and before its restoration, all that could be seen around it were fallen marbles, which is how the square came to be known as Pietra.
As I have said, Rome is three cities, one on top of the other, and when I asked Isabella what she thought of the stockbrokers predicting the value of stocks from within an ancient temple, she found this also to be normalissimo, and continued to speak to me of a lady and her cat, and how the cat was fed an entire chicken a day. She found this story to be far more interesting than the city around her, and she said that, whenever the lady went away for a few days to visit some friends in Frascati, the servants would eat the chicken and leave the bones where the cat always left them…
An excerpt from the book: FEELING ROME