by Melinda Gallo

Florence radiates love

Every monument, piazza, statue, building, garden, church, bridge, and work of art in Florence reminds us that not only is love only real, but that it is also tangible. When you come to Florence, you don’t just see Florence’s beauty and take a mental picture of it. You feel Florence’s beauty permeate your heart. What initially began as pleasure for your eyes quickly becomes love coursing through your veins. I am still amazed to this day at how Florence’s beauty opens up my heart and fills it up with love.

Living in Florence :: Florence radiates love

I delight in Florence’s beauty every time I take a stroll through the streets, catch a glimpse of the many monuments, walk across the numerous bridges, take in the view from Piazzale Michelangiolo, admire the different colored buildings with their terra-cotta rooftops, traverse a piazza, listen to the church bells ringing, or sit in a garden.

Like most people, I saw and appreciated Florence’s beauty the first time I came for a visit. It was overwhelming to see so much beauty in such a relatively small city. When I returned to live in Florence permanently, she began revealing more and more of her beauty. I was inspired to look beyond the surface and spend more time contemplating her. I learned that I wasn’t supposed to just fill my eyes up with her beauty, but rather to fill my heart up with her beauty. I began to appreciate other aspects of Florence that I initially overlooked. It was in that moment that my life changed completely. I began to feel Florence’s love spread throughout my heart, mind, and soul.

Over the years, many people have contacted me because they too desire to live in Florence. I can tell by their passion that they too have been touched by Florence’s beauty. I know that it’s more than just her physical beauty because if that were the case, they would be content only seeing pictures of her. Instead, they want to bask in Florence’s energy because it revitalizes them. I think what they truly desire is to actually experience more love in their hearts and in their lives. I know for me, it’s one of the reasons I don’t want to ever leave Florence.

I believe that Florence’s wish for us all is not only that we experience and appreciate the beauty she emanates, but also that we experience and appreciate all the beauty around us. Maybe the goal of filling ourselves up with Florence’s beauty isn’t only for us to see more beauty in the world and feel her love, but to also share that love we feel with others.

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