In June, I went to Italy for the first time for a work conference, and I guess really didn’t know what to expect. I am a Latin American-ist and spent most of my university education obsessing with everything “South of the Border.” So, even though I took AP Modern Euro in high school, I was not prepared for the, shall we say, richness that was Italy. I did not do my background reading and didn’t know what I was looking at most of the time. I was traveling alone, and did not have much time beyond the work conference. It is the first time I was traveling completely alone in a country that I did not speak the language. I ate some memorably good pasta (and HORRIBLE pizza); got the cliche picture with the Leaning Tower; went to the Uffizi, David, and Duomo in Florence; and drank a lot of wine in San Rocco di Pilli. One of the most memorable pieces of my trip was stumbling upon the Loggia dei Lanzi and photographing the “Rape of Polyxena.” I mean, stupendous.
I listened into a guide explain to a tour group about the artistic movement away from making sculptures with just a front viewpoint; this was a sculpture that had many vantage points. I was mesmerized by the violence, emotion, action, symbolism, and artistry and totally got drawn into this sculpture.
See what I am talking about: