|Siena city wall that now surrounds a soccer field|
|Outside Sienna's City Wall|
|The head of St. Catherine (source)|
|The finger of St. Catherine (source)|
|Just outside of St. Catherine's childhood home|
|The courtyard near St. Catherine's childhood home|
|The view of The Basilica of San Domenico from the courtyard |
of St. Catherine's childhood home
|Narrow streets with cars and pedestrians sharing the space|
The pictures below are just a small sampling of all of the photos I took. Of course none of my pictures do the Duomo adequate justice. It's one of those places you just have to see to truly appreciate.
|The Story of Fortune|
|The ceiling of the library|
|The libray with a statue of The Three Graces in the center.|
|A music book in the library.|
It was here at the Duomo that the most heart-racing experience of our pilgrimage happened to Paul and I. Toward the end of the tour, our guide allowed us some quiet time for silent prayer in a side chapel. After kneeling in silent prayer for a short time, Paul and I stopped to light a candle. When we were through we turned around and found that our entire group was gone! We went outside and couldn't see anyone from our group among the hundreds of people walking about! We didn't know where the next destination was so we couldn't even ask for help in finding it. We were lost! Because our group was so large, there were 80 people all together on our pilgrimage, we were divided into two groups-red and green. As we stood outside the church wondering what to do we noticed some of the red group members moving toward the side chapel so we followed them and found that the red group was just finishing their tour. So we stayed with them and when their tour of the Duomo was complete we followed them to the Piazza del Campo, the city square, where we found our green group as they were splitting up for lunch and free time. What a relief!
The Piazza del Campo was encircled with restaurants and we enjoyed a very relaxing meal after being frazzled by our experience of being lost. We were treated to a beautiful impromptu concert by one of the waiters during our lunch. The waiter's voice was angelic as he sang an traditional Italian song, but we were so surprised to turn around and see that this singer with an Italian voice was actually Asian! Italy it seems, is a melting pot much like the United States.
Many of the restaurants we visited had a large television sharing world wide news. This restaurant also had a television, but instead of showing the news, we viewed scenes of the famous Palio de Siena, a famous horse race that is held twice each year in the Piazza, once on the Feast of the Visitation and the other on the Feast of the Assumption. The entire Piazza is covered with sand for this popular race which is so treacherous that many of the bareback riders are thrown from their horses. Each horse represents a contrade, or district, of Siena.
|Piazza del Campo|
|Piazza del Campo|
|lunch at the Piazza del Campo|
|Fonte Gaia-Fountain of the World|