Still thinking about bridges. This one is the Ponte Vecchio in Florence. (Doesn't that sound so much more romantic than 'old bridge'?) The photograph was taken in 2005. It's an amazing bridge which for centuries has been so much more than a way of getting across the river. It's a meeting-place, a market and, by the looks of this photograph, a means of defying gravity.
Yesterday I received a text from a friend who, to celebrate a significant birthday, is enjoying a short break in this wonderful city.
(I was just a teensy weensy bit jealous. I still prefer Venice to Florence but all the same it is a great place especially if you love Renaissance art. I'd love to go back some day.)
Taking short breaks, especially if they involve flying, has become a very controversial thing of late- apparently very damaging to the environment and contributing to global warming. (Of course this is something that wealthy people were always able to do. It's just a problem now because it has become affordable to so many more people.)
I guess we will all have to think very carefully about how much we travel in future. However, there are some very positive benefits to be gained in visiting 'foreign' lands... and it has a lot to do with bridges. When you have been to a so-called 'foreign' country, observed its culture, eaten its special foods and, most of all, met its people- it is so much harder to think of them as enemies. You are less inclined to fear or to fight those whom you have come to know as friends. In other words travel builds bridges and that can only be a good thing.