Overlooking the Tiber, on the Trastevere side of the river, is a beautiful villa and garden that perfectly unite the artist and the agricultural biodiversity nut. And so it was, last Saturday, that The Main Squeeze and I found ourselves at the Villa Farnesina,1 gazing in wonder at the frescoes that decorate the rooms. Of course we had both been there before, often. This time was different because of an exhibit -- I Colori della Prosperità: Frutti del Vecchio e Nuovo Mondo -- rendered in English as Colours of Prosperity Fruits from the Old and New World.
It being Easter Sunday, The Main Squeeze suggested a walk across the top of Trastevere to visit the church of Saint Onofrio. He's the one who has amazingly long hair that clothes him and keeps him warm (and decent), and I've always had a soft spot for him. The church, I was sure I'd seen; although a little dull it seemed a good idea for a destination.
I was wrong. The church I thought I knew as Sant'Onofrio isn't, and the actual Sant'Onofrio al Gianicolo is breathtakingly lovely. I snapped a few pictures as an aide-memoire1 but the overall feeling I came away with was that I had wasted far too much time passing this place by, stuck within the unlovely Bambin' Gesu hospital and always beset by chaos.
Italian bureaucracy seems designed to sap the will and break the spirit. You would think that, being a bureaucracy of long standing, there would be a process, a correct way of doing things, that, no matter how complex the labyrinth, there would be a path through it and the bureaucrats would know the One True Way.
Last night, we came home to a burst water main and the street awash. This morning, the street below was dry and so were the taps in the house. Luckily, there was enough old water in the kettle for a cup of tea each (though not the customary two) or else we'd probably be lying there still, parched. Taking the dog out, therefore, I loaded my backpack with an empty 5-litre demijohn and set off.