This post is not a story in words, but one in pictures of Spello. Most mornings at 9 a.m. I have a lesson in Italian language, culture, customs, history and Spellano dialect with Angelo Mazzoli, and I leave my house a few minutes early to make the walk to his house.
I was struck one day with the beauty and the history that I see along the way, and decided to photograph my way from my house to his, and back down to the main road, Via Giulia.
So here, in photos, is my daily trip—and I absolutely realize that I am so lucky to be here.
From my door, I make a right turn up the hill on Via Cappuccini. Behind and under the building on the right, my house was once their stable.
Nearing the top of the hill, the road curves and the Arco Romano comes into view.
The Arco Romano, a double limestone arch that was once one of the original Roman entries to Hispellum (Spello), is now one of the principal destinations for visiting tourists.
On the left side of the roadway beyond the Roman arch, the old Cappuccini monastery grounds and San Severino church take up a large area on the highest hill in Spello.
The Cappuccini church, San Severino, dating from the 12th century
To the right, the view from Piazza Belvedere is a panorama from Perugia to Foligno, facing toward the west across the Val d’Umbra Nord. Here many people find a seat to watch the sun set behind the mountains across the valley.
View north toward Assisi, visible high up the hillside on the opposite end of Mount Subasio
View southwest across the valley toward Montefalco. recognized by the water tower on the hilltop, and home of the famous sagrantino wines
Ruins of the Roman amphitheater of Hispellum (Spello), visible below the village and fenced off to prevent trespassing
Uphill again from the Piazza Belvedere toward Angelo’s home, between medieval stone walls on a stone street
The largest villa in Spello is at the top of hill, is almost always vacant, and reveals its Roman stone foundation
Stairway leading to the gardens of the large villa atop the hill
Downhill toward Angelo’s, with the brick non-skid pedestrian walkways installed in the center of the streets when Robespier was mayor of Spello
The last bit of walk downhill toward the San Martino church, near Angelo’s house
Tiny elderly lady waiting in front of the San Martino church with her umbrella
San Martino, a church dating from the 13th century, on the corner near Angelo’s
The tiny lady stands to meet her son, coming to escort her home
With her son at her side, safe footing home across the slick stones
The steep descent toward the central piazza, after my lesson is finished with Angelo
Alley to the left, lined with aspedistra plants, and often hosting a group of elderly ladies sitting in green plastic chairs, and talking
Alley to the right, with pots always filled with flowers in bloom
Last descent to the main street through an archway–and yes, cars do pass through here often