500 hours of solitude (more or less): I have often walked down these streets before…

…but they never quite looked like this.

It was Sunday afternoon into evening. I had some stuff to do in the city, including laundry, so I loaded the clothes in the car and off I went, beseeching my late father-in-law, the patron saint of parking, for a spot up the street. Joey came through, So I loaded the machine (it’s a combo washer-dryer, felicitously called a “lavasciuga” in Italian–say “la-va-SHOO-gah) and then decided to take a walk,

I was really hoping to do something bad, like have a drink or a hot chocolate, which here is more like downing a warm slightly more liquid dark chocolate mousse. But I didn’t, and maybe because I was distracted. The sky seemed a little more dramatic than usual. I snapped a shot to catch that, and went on my way.

I did the obligatory back and forth—su e giù in Italian—on the Corso Vannucci, watching some Carnival silliness. When I reached the end of the Corso, things were looking fine, as you can see below.

Soon it was time to walk back, maybe see some friends in the ‘hood. Now the sky went from interesting to wow, it that for real? I never saw the buildings turn quite that color, either. Usually they get golden, then sorta brown, then black.

And then, it was breathtaking—another favorite Italian word of mine: mozzafiato,

I wasn’t the only one who noticed. I looked around and people were stopping everywhere to take pictures, selfies, or just look around. It was one of those collective moments of appreciating beauty, on a late Sunday afternoon as a warm winter draws to the end.

P.S. I checked out Facebook when I got home, and it seems like everyone I know who’s on it posted a shot or talked about the sunset.

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