Yesterday morning thick clouds covered the sky and cast an odd green light that promised a storm was coming. Because I’m from Michigan, I’ve seen my fair share of weird weather but what happened next was completely unexpected. I was talking with my roommate, Ziba when we started hearing sharp cracks on the window. It was like the sky opened up and all at once dumped huge chunks of ice.
At first they slammed into the window, it was so loud and forceful I seriously thought it might break open, car alarms started going off and sirens sounded in the distance. Ziba, Luca, and I gathered around with our phones, recording the streets as they flooded with ice and water. The wind shifted, so we opened the window to get a better view.
We were all dumbfounded, this was seriously crazy, especially for Florence! Everyone cleared out of the street and we could see the unfortunate few who were caught outside being pelted and running for cover.
After maybe a half hour or so of intense precipitation, the hail slowed. Considering it has been blue skies and in the 70s/80s here since I’ve arrived, I couldn’t even imagine how the heck it was cold enough for ice to form. Even after the storm, I stayed inside for a few hours in fear of getting caught in another downpour.
I walked to meet Ziba and her filmmaking friend around four o’clock and by then the sun was out but little piles of ice were still collected along the sidewalk.
Ziba introduced me to her friend from Iran who is making a documentary film in a museum in Prato and has acted in some Iranian television series. He was so welcoming and friendly, though he didn’t speak much English so Ziba translated. It was really interesting to connect with someone when we couldn’t actually communicate independently. We shared our film works and talked about different cultures. He called me Marilyn Monroe because it sounds like my name and, of course the blonde hair.
He served us lots of little treats with flavors and textures I have never experienced! I tried dates, pistachio candies, and sipped on some really delightful tea. I’m planning to go with him to take photographs behind the scenes of his documentary. I’m really looking forward to an excuse to venture beyond the city and learn more about cultures I haven’t really been exposed to.
A strange morning turned into a truly delightful evening. I made a little detour on the walk home and took a few pictures –