by Melinda Gallo

Buona domenica!

I always forget how delicious domenica (Sunday) is until I am back in Florence. I usually only spend one Sunday a month here, but it is by far the most delightful day of the week. Donít get me wrong: I love the other days too. I like Mondays because they mark the beginning of the week and the door to possibilities; Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays because I am in the flow; Fridays because I daydream about the weekend; and Saturdays because I accomplish my personal goals and prepare myself for the next week. And then thereís Sunday, which is the day I get to relax, take care of myself, spend time with loved ones, and luxuriate in any way I see fit.

A blanket of peace envelops Florence on Sunday morning and everything seems to be going at a slower pace. I woke up to the sound of the Arno flowing and church bells ringing in the distance. The piazza is virtually empty since the construction workers who are working on the Camera di Commercio (Chamber of Commerce) and the hotel have the day off today. I looked out the window of my apartment and saw a few runners in the street, a family strolling toward the Ponte Vecchio, and an elderly couple arm in arm slowly making their way to church.

The Italians have probably known about the pleasures of Sunday forever. Itís the only day that we commonly use in a greeting to someone. Yesterday when I was leaving a shop or saying goodbye to a friend, I would say, ďBuona domenica (Enjoy your Sunday)!Ē Almost every time, the personís face would light up when they smiled and say it right back to me.

Even if youíre not in Florence, I wish you a buona domenica so that you too can unwind, spending time taking care of yourself, so that you will be revitalized to begin the week with vigor and joy.

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