Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Coffee

Café life — or in this case, caffè life.  Here's the corner bar in San Giustino (Valtiberina), Umbria, where we lived for three months a few winters ago. Valtiberina indicates that it's in the valley of the Tiber River. There's another San Giustino in nearby Tuscany, known as Valdarno, meaning it's in the valley of the Arno River.

At any rate, as with many Italian towns, this café was the all-day hangout for the older men while the women shopped (note the shopping bag, lower-left) and then repaired to their houses to spend the afternoon cooking.  Here the sun had come out and the men were happy to move to the outside tables.


The coffee shops were often staffed by younger women.  Here some San Giustino baristas take a smoke break with one of the locals at the corner of Crucifix Street.


Here's the inside of one of our favorite cafés, Dedalo, which also served pizza.


This café is in Deruta, about an hour away, home of the famous maiolica (aka faience).


And this café is in Ravenna, on the Adriatic coast. As you can see, here are more town geezers hanging about. Some of them appear to have ridden their bikes today.


We were always happy to find a hospitable coffee shop to warm up in after tramping the frigid hilltown lanes.

17 comments:

Alan Burnett said...

Wonderful photographs - the monochrome treatment gives them real atmosphere.

Teresa Wilson Rogers said...

Wonderful photos that did indeed seem to capture the ambiance and feel of this week's theme. Thanks for sharing!

barbara and nancy said...

It's amazing that you had so many photos of Italian coffee shops to go with this week's theme.
Isn't it curious that the shops are filled with men lazing around - while the poor women are home cooking the big meals for them?
Nancy

Postcardy said...

I guess hanging around and drinking coffee is a male thing, but I feel sorry for the women there.

Brett Payne said...

Seems like a very relaxed lifestyle.

Little Nell said...

It's the same here, except it's not usually coffee the old boys are drinking!

Nigel Aspdin (Derby, UK) said...

Not sure if you were photographing the cat or the cream?

Bob Scotney said...

Men lazing around but the reflection of the dog waiting outside caught my eye. We don't see scenes like these in the North East of England.

Dakota Boo said...

These are great photos and a great insight into your local coffee house culture.

Sharon said...

I had to look twice (three times)at the second last photo of the boy in the coffee shop. It looks very much like my son!

Kathy Morales said...

These are very nice and give a sense of place. Felt a little sorry for the old guy in the last picture who had to take a seat away from the others. Guess everyone wanted to face out toward the street.

Misty said...

I like the monochrome shots; very interesting pictures. Must have been a wonderful and rich three months living there. Thank you for sharing.

HansHB said...

Great B&W post!

Mike Brubaker said...

Nice photos. There's a timeless quality to these cafe clubs, as if with only a change of garments, they could have been around since Roman times.

Karen S. said...

Looks like a great place to pull up a chair and have a cup of coffee. Is that a dog's reflection in the one doorway? It almost appears like something else!

Boobook said...

Lovely photos that record a culture and a time.

Dragonstar said...

Excellent series. I like the cat reflection, but it's the photo directly above that appeals to me most.