A craggy castle on the tip of a peninsula, guarding against intruders to a land of days gone by. This castle is in Sirmione on Lake Garda, an hour and a half drive from our home here in Northern Italy. Yesterday afternoon we took a little day trip out to this town, exploring a new part of this beautiful country. Besides this wonderful castle, there is a nice pedestrian town with wonderful lake views, natural hot springs, roman ruins and the most frigid wind coming off of the lake. A perfect afternoon for some of the best gelato I’ve had in a while!
I love these old castles. They are so solid, so real, even today. You can tell that life was not easy in the days these castles were needed. Bare stone rooms, small spaces, dangerous stairways. The majority of the inhabitants worked long hours in difficult conditions, lived in cramped spaces without much reward other than food, shelter and protection from invading forces.
This vision is so different than our idealized version of castles with turrets and princesses with flowing dresses. I find I like the reality of these solid places better than the gilded rooms of kings and queens later in history. There is something honest and true that resonates in the bare stone, coming through the centuries to speak to me in this age. Do you feel it too?