Santa Rosa Parade in Viterbo, Italy

On Saturday, September 3rd, I woke up and laid in bed for quite some time. I knew that the parade for Viterbo’s patron saint, Santa Rosa, was going to be taking place soon but I honestly had no idea when it would start.

Throughout the morning, I would peek out over our balcony to gage how many people were outside. Around 2p.m., my roommate and I decided to head outside and see what might be going on.

As we made our way downstairs and onto our perches on a window ledge that had a clear view of the street, there was a group of young Italians playing what looked like a combination of volleyball and soccer. While I was watching the amusing game, there was a little girl who was sitting on a stool in front of us, her mother and sister on her side. She kept turning around to view us with wide, questioning eyes.

After a few times of her turning around, we both said, “Ciao!” and waved. She turned her head away slightly, embarrassed that she had been caught. Noting her sudden movement, her mother turned towards us, a knowing look crossed her face once she had seen our pale skin and red hair.

“English?”, she questioned.

“Yes, ” we both replied, both of us not knowing what else to say. A warm smile made her eyes brighten slightly. Turning in her chair, so that she could face us, she asked where we came from. When we both replied California, her eyes lit up even more.

“Oh! So beautiful, California”.  Both of us nodded and thanked her, repeatedly telling her that we find Viterbo so beautiful.

I guess that’s the funny thing about traveling; you may find the place you are staying in so much more beautiful or interesting then the place you came from. Whereas, the locals may find your home more beautiful than their own. Both of us not truly knowing what makes that place  so unique to an individual.

Enjoying the sights. Photo by Madeline Merlic.

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