by: Bret Lott
Creative Writing Professor Bret Lott is leading the summer, 2017, study abroad program in Spoleto, Italy.
We take a couple of day trips on the weekends, and this year we’re visiting different small towns than in the past (remember Gubbio and the Funivia?). We had read about the little—little—town of Cività di Bagnoregio, an ancient village first carved out of the porous tufa rock by the Etruscans, and the way the place simply rises up out of the surrounding canyons, serving as a stronghold and city center for centuries. When we arrived, all the descriptions we’d read and pictures we’d seen came nowhere near the awesome beauty of the town. The place is only reachable by a VERY long walk from the town of Bagnoregio across a pedestrian bridge, up and up and up. Once inside the walls, we stopped at a tiny panini purveyor—literally a hole in the wall—and had sandwiches with fresh backed focaccia (still warm!), then wandered the streets to take in the vistas and gardens. This was a hot day, and this was a long trek, but everyone agreed it was well worth the visit. I asked the students if they thought we should take next year’s gang here, and they all said yes, their only suggestion that next time we stay longer. We took that as a good sign.