by Melinda Gallo

Up to Fiesole to cool off

After many cool and rainy days this summer, the heat has arrived and bought with it high humidity. Being from California, I love the seasons and welcome the hot weather. However, it does take some getting used to because it can be a little overwhelming at the beginning. When we have time and want to cool off, we either go to the montagne (mountains) or to the mare (seaside), but if we don't have that much time, we try to escape the city if just for a few hours.

Before our friends take off on their vacation next week, we decided to go to Fiesole for dinner tonight. Normally we would’ve stayed in town, but because of the cooler temperatures up there, we planned a trip to the town I see from the Piazzale Michelangiolo. I couldn’t wait to see Florence from there as it is always wonderful to see from different angles and distances.

My marito (husband) asked me to make reservations at a restaurant that is located on a campeggio (campground) in Fiesole. At first I was a little surprised, but he assured me the food was good when he went a few weeks ago with friends. I had never heard of going to a campeggio for dinner, but I was open to it. Besides, he said the view was spectacular.

We drove through the center of Fiesole where there was a mercatino (small market) and continued through town to the campeggio. After signing in at the reception desk, we walked up to the restaurant where the veduta (view) of the city was magnificent. Unfortunately, a noticeable cappa di smog (layer of smog) made the city look grim from afar.

We were seated next to the piscina (pool) and could see the city in the distance throughout the meal. I was happy to see the streetlights turn on, but the darker Florence became, the harder it was to see my city with the cappa.

Because the campeggio is surrounded by trees, it cooled down just enough that I almost put on a scialle (shawl). The cool air was enjoyable especially knowing that we’d have to eventually return to our hot city afterwards.

After our delicious meal, we drove back down to Florence with the windows down to let the cool air hit our faces. Once we arrived along the lungarno (road along the Arno), the air was considerably heavier. Between the stones and the asfalto (asphalt), Florence doesn’t cool off as well in the evening.

Our apartment was so hot when we returned to it that we had to open all the windows to create a flusso d’aria (air flow). With the warm air still entering our apartment, I wondered if maybe we could’ve spent the night at the campeggio where it was cool amid the trees with Florence at our fingertips.

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