So much to say about this week’s challenge: Horizon
Coming by sea or air to my native city of Bari, South–East of Italy, low buildings and palms trees fill the horizon. Bari is a large city, but it has never been a metropolis of glass and steel skyscrapers that one can see from the distance. Life under those palm trees and mostly warm weather is chaotic and hectic, but low buildings give a sense of a laid back city, where nothing is more important than lunch hour, home cooking and café life.
The city planners purposely made the Murat centre (downtown) of Bari a low buildings area to keep intact the neo-classical style of historical buildings which beauty does not need to be obscured by modern constructions. Like all the large cities the horizon of Bari is made of buildings if you look at it from the Sea. The classy downtown area is a walkable area, but not traffic-free, it is decorated with fashionable shops on both sides of the streets and cafés à la page. The downtown was built around early 1800s, when Joachim-Napoléon Murat (brother in law of Napoleon Bonaparte) was nominated King of Naples.
As part of the city, when I lived there, I could almost see the flamboyant and charismatic cavalry officer Joachim-Napoléon Murat, strolling down Corso Vittorio Emanuele and disappearing in the old Bari section where nightlife is almost better than the Italian Riviera. The “Dandy King” was his surname and today I wonder if the distinguished elegance of the Barese people isn’t the heritage he left us.
Laundry hanging from balconies drying in the fresh air, plants and peoples’ voices projecting their waves from one balcony to the other, color the old Bari alleyways as far as one can see on the horizon. The old Bari is a truly characteristic Italian Kasbah. Many years ago women needed a company of men to go through it as the night brought out the bad intentioned people. Now old Bari is the elegant living room of the city. With the efforts of the city administrators, the area has been cleaned up of all non-senses, it is safe and pullulates with small restaurants, café, pubs, designers’ studios and expensive flats. From there one can enjoy the horizon while eating a cup of granita and brioche. The ex-Yugoslavia is only six hours away, on clear days, one might even see it peeping through the Italian horizon.
From the promenade, overlooking at the open and calm water of the Adriatic Sea, many times I thought one day I was going to leave this town. Beyond its horizon my dreams and my curiosity were hiding and I went searching for. Ciao,
Copyright © 2013 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved
Valentina Cirasola is a trained Italian Interior Designer in business since 1990. Being Italian born and raised, Classicism, stylish and timeless designs have influenced Valentina’s design work. She will create your everyday living with a certain luxury without taking away your comfort. She loves to restore old homes, historic dwellings and she focuses on remodeling. Author of three books all available on