A year or two ago, I was in Florence, being a flaneur. I got lost. How? Good question. Florence has always struck me as a small town. One with great art, stunning architecture, jaw-dropping history and wonderful people, but small nonetheless.
Somewhere behind the Santa Croce, I was wandering helplessly in a labyrinth of cobblestone and stucco. All the streets, doors, and buildings looked alike. I stoped at a small intersection and spun helplessly, exasperated and defeated, staring at the sky as if it was a big, blue GPS. It wasn’t. It didn’t help.
When my eyes returned to earth, I found myself looking at a well-dressed elderly gentleman who was standing in a doorway, expressionless. He said something in Italian. It was a question, and I assumed he inquired about my destination.
“Piazza della Signoria?” I replied. He stepped into the narrow street, nodded for me to follow…