Saturday, January 5

The other evening we went for a little evening walk down to the beach. Suddenly in front of us appeared a squadron of Roman soldiers, ready to march with flowing red cloaks and open leather thong sandals. Had we slipped through time to another era? Squeezing past the soldiers we carried on to find out.
Down below the church the floor was covered in straw and a group of men, possibly shepherds walked past us carrying what looked like a manger. We followed them to see what happened next.

The square on the beach front was crowded with people, all facing away from the sea. I turned to look and saw that the lion steps had been transformed into a magical scene. Long curtains hung down from balconies and Roman columns had appeared where restaurant tables normally stood. A star shone down on a lady dressed in pale blue robes. She was holding a baby.
Throught the crowds arrived three kings, dressed in the finest silk robes or orange, yellow and red. They walked up to the lady with the baby as her husband watched proudly and presented gifts to the newborn child.

I was told later that other people had travelled through time that evening and seen boatbuilders and fishermen working on the pier,and along the beach glimpses of old washerwomen, wine-makers, markets and other scenes..
Or was it just a live nativity scene?


  1. Strange dream...

    There seems to be so many fascinating events happening in the off-season for you locals!

  2. Great post for someone that is going on vacation!

  3. Oh holy night, how beautiful!
    It is the Orthodox Christmas tomorrow!

  4. What you described was a re-enactment in celebration of the Feast of the Epiphany, when the Magi or Three Kings arrived in Bethlehem to adore the Baby Jesus. The woman dressed in blue was the Virgin Mary and her husband, St. Joseph, was the man with her. The Roman soldiers were there because they ruled the country then; Mary and Joseph had to travel from Nazareth to Bethlehem for the census commanded by Caesar Augustus.

    Epiphany is a national holiday in Italy and children receive gifts then from La Befana, a good witch, who appears to be an old peasant woman.

  5. Cara Professoressa,

    I choose NOT to go into the history of many events and traditions on my blog because I find that others living in Italy cover these events very well and it would get boring if all us expats described the same thing.

    I choose, instead, to tell what I see as I walk around town. I am sorry if it upsets you if what I write is not technically correct, but this is how I choose to portray certain events. I hope you can understand this.


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