If one fancies walking across high bridges there is yet another experience for them in the railway viaduct from San Romano di Garfagnana to Poggio on the line which carries on from Bagni di Lucca, past Castelnuovo di Garfagnana to eventually reach Aulla.
There is a special pedestrian walkway on the left hand side of the viaduct crossing one side of the valley to the other and giving beautifully long views up and down the Serchio valley. This viaduct can easily be incorporated in a longer walk.
Below the start of the viaduct there’s a house. I wouldn’t particularly like to live under one of these arches especially if there are litterbugs travelling on the train above, but the house does have extensive flat lands around it.
Another delight of this area is the village of Sambuca, the smallest in the comune of San Romano, dating back to the tenth century. It’s very picturesque with its church of San Pantaleone and its houses scattered and perched between giant black rocks called dogli.
The Serchio flows nearby and contains some wonderful rock pools brilliant for bathing. Who really needs a swimming pool when there are these?
I was looking at these photos yesterday morning when there seemed to be nothing much to cheer one up with the continuous rain. (It did clear up in the afternoon, however). Sometimes there was little information about the pictures apart from when they were taken.
Then I discovered that I had a huge archive stretching back to when I first moved here – my emails. Just using Gmail I found that I had sent these pictures with descriptions to those who had been with me on walks and visits – eight hundred alone to one person and thirty thousand emails in all!
It’s going to be a tough job for future social historians to make sense of the vast amount of data we are accumulating through the use of digital photography and emails – if we decide to keep them. (There is currently talk of legislation which would allow effective wiping out of personal data on one’s decease if one decides on this).
Selection, of course, is the answer. I was amazed to find also that Picasa, a photo organizing programme I find particularly useful for re-sizing pictures down to five hundred pixels for use on the web, also has face recognition built into it: find a photograph of someone, give it the name of the person and the computer will scan for all similar likenesses. Absolutely fabulous. I’ve grouped well over seven thousand picture of my wife alone from many, many years. Do we really change that much then?
It would be also great if there could be programmes that recognise places where one took the photographs. At least, I have some memory and those emails to locate these pictures which I took on Midsummer Day 2006.