Stimulation & Absorbtion!

My environment is full of stimulation. I am constantly feeling my mind & body struggle to absorb my surroundings.  Every day my sense of where I live changes. It is in the old Jewish Quarter in the heart of the old part of Rome.

Maps are useless. They assume a grid.

My physical experience of the city has coalesced into a sense of a “V” or a pie shape fitted into another “V” into another “V” onto yet another.

A piazza fooled me. It is a rectangle with streets going off each of its sides and corners. BUT most such streets lead to a “V” into another “V”.

Here is an ancient map of the area where I live & one of my favorite places, Largo Argentina.  It is here in the Theater of Pompey that Caesar was killed.


Roma_PlanCaesar Square




2 thoughts on “Stimulation & Absorbtion!

  1. LOL! I have SO been there! The maps designed for the tourists assume you’ll be staying on the main streets, going to the popular spots, and they don’t bother being accurate in other areas. I first suspected this when the route I mapped back to my hotel got me lost. When I boldly set out on my own, one night, to find the Via Colina (I was looking for the Colline Gate) there was no longer any doubt!
    Cities in the U.S. tend to be on a grid because they are planned cities, with plenty of space to work with and thought given to transportation (and cars – we’re a young country). Old World cities grew up organically, along riverbanks and game trails. Once fortified walls were added to protect the populace, space was at a premium and most people walked, so streets tend to be narrow and winding, and second stories may overhang the streets to steal a few more feet of living space at the expense of daylight for pedestrians. I often found myself taking pictures of streets and roof-lines 🙂

    I was surprised at how open Pest was, when I visited Hungary a couple years ago. Then I found out the city had been destroyed by a flood a few centuries back, so is itself a planned city. (Buda is built on the hills across the Danube from Pest, and with the building of the bridges it became Budapest)


  2. Your description of Rome as a city without a grid reminds me of Waco here in Texas and all of the cities in Japan. Interesting how we want structure even when it doesn’t exist


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