Genoa turned out to be a wonderful surprise of beauty. It has the narrowest alleys we have seen so far and there are many of them. Its harbor is a delight with its natural curved coastline sloping up into a hill and filled with boats and ringed with a wonderful walkway lined with shops and restaurants. It is also the birthplace of Christopher Columbus and they are proud of that.
The cathedral San Lorenzo is quite magnificent with a main altar area lined with imposing statutes of Biblical characters and a stunning fresco painted high above. The cathedral is an odd mixture of styles that find harmony. But it is the Church of Jesus that took my breath away. I was not expecting this wonder of Baroque art when I pulled open the door. In fact, we almost passed it by, but I saw an open door in what looked like a church and just went for it. And boom, overwhelming motion in art–that is the Baroque style–motion. Then to my surprise, we read–in Italian–verified later in English, that several of Peter Paul Rubens’ great paintings are on the altars of this wondrous church. People were coming still late in the evening with offerings of palms on this Palm Sunday.
Sometimes, the most satisfying things happen when you do not expect them to happen. Like finding that Genoa, a city most tourists pass by, was a jewel and quite a satisfying place to visit. WEG