Florence became just a little more perfect yesterday as I found just the right spot to leave some of Ray’s ashes behind. Now Ray is a vital part of what some argue is the most beautiful city on Earth.
It was a physically strenuous day that entailed a lot more walking; a lot more elevation changes than we had ever anticipated. But it culminated in what will become a memory that I will have for a long time. After a day of trodding over a million cobblestones, looking at the Medici this and the Medici that we finally found Piazzale Michelangelo. It has the most glorious view of Florence that I’ve ever seen. Because it is so difficult to get to it is not over run with tourists. We had a very pleasant lunch on the Piazzale, soaking in that view so long that all three of us were stiff when we finally got up to move on to the next stop: The San Mineato al Monte cathedral. I’d never heard of it, and the “al monte” part wasn’t too concerning to me since I thought we were pretty much on top of the mountain already.
However when we got there you quickly saw that there were a kazillion steps (I counted them). Mike is having a knee replace in three weeks and by this time his trade-in was really acting up so he decided to wait for us below. Ann and I bounded up those steps like we were 40 year olds, sorta. It was such a treat when we got to the top. The church was superbly preserved and the atmosphere was surreal with Gregorian monks chanting in the background. My hair actually stood on end.
As we were leaving the church the view was so breathtaking and the spot so wonderful I just knew that I had to leave some of Ray’s ashes here. Their is an old cemetery around the church. I saw one particular area that was filled with blooming roses and an incredible of the whole city of Florence. Ann and I left some of Ray’s there, spent a few minutes reflecting on how much we both knew he would love this place. It is a peaceful place. It is a restful place. It is in
Ray’s beloved Italy.