Back to Italy - Morning Stop in Fanano, July 26, 2010

As time does not belong to me
Although I always tell it,
No certain time is yours, O traveller.
(Fanano Clock Tower, inscription dated October 20th, 1609)

Monday morning comes and we check out of the lovely Gabriella Hotel, but not until we’ve had some breakfast. I opted for a straight up shot of dark, strong espresso to accompany the rolls, muesli and yogurt.
Starting the Morning With A Jolt
Breakfast Conversation

Before leaving, we (Dawn and I) get to check out the hotel’s wine cellar and the other sections of the hotel grounds. I would be happy to stay another day, but we have a full day of travel ahead of us – we will visit the commune of Fanano, head into Modena and drive 3 hours to the west coast – to the Cinque Terre.
Wine Selection

The Courtyard

The Gabriella Hotel

It is a beautiful, cool morning in the mountains, and the Hotel Gabriella peeks out at us as we drive away, a ray of yellow through the forest of green.
The Hotel On the Hill

Giovanni leads us to our first stop in Fanano, where we meet up with Dave’s Aunt Eva. We walk into the town square, quite conscious of our “tourist” appearance (again, no Asians around in these parts). I snapped pictures of some of the local goods before we come to the large clock tower in the far corner of the town.
Eva and a Friend

The Streets of Fanano


Dried Porcini

What Time is It?
Some information about the Clock Tower and Palazzo Lardi, taken from a website on Fanano
Standing at the beginning of Via Sabbatini, it was built in 1340 as the headquarters of the Infantry Corps, later served as a gendarmerie with prison, and then became a private residence. In 1433 it housed Cosimo de’ Medici during his exile from Florence, and in 1439 it gave accommodation to Pope Eugene IV on his return from the Council of Ferrara. In the XVI Century the facade was decorated in Tuscan style, with the fine main doorway. In 1607 it was purchased by Pietro Lardi, a nobleman of Ferrara sent to Fanano by the Este family as Commissar; the building is still owned by the Lardi family. The adjoining Clock Tower, which once guarded the gateway to the castle, was raised in 1609 to create space for the mechanism of the clock with bell, the work of a skilled local craftsman. The Tower is still owned by the Municipality and was completely restored during 2005.

Admiring the tall clock tower, we are surprised when Giovanni appears with a set of keys, which he uses to open up a door at the base of the structure. We climb the steep stairs up and up through the structure for our own private tour.
Heading Up The Bell Tower

Looking Down

A beautiful view from up top – and then the bell started to chime – it’s 11am.
View from the Bell Tower
Looking down at The Church of San Silvestro

It's Loud When the Bell Chimes

Clock Gears

The Bell

Upon leaving the Bell Tower, Dawn notices the plaque above the doorway we entered through:
The Plaque above the Door

Oh, how fortunate we were to have Giovanni as our tour guide in Fanano.

Jeanne  – (September 12, 2010 at 3:27 PM)  

Wow! What an amazing experience to have. You've captured your travels beautifully!

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