Walking in the Italian Rain

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The first time I came to Italy for an extended vacation, it rained nearly every day for four weeks. It was April and unseasonably cold and wet that year - and yet I loved it. I quickly learned to always carry an umbrella, to duck into a bar for a coffee when a sudden rain hit, to eat meals indoors during the hardest rains, and to take advantage of every break in the storm to be out and about. I often walked in the rain and enjoyed seeing the city reflected in puddles. Maybe it's because I live most of the year in a place that gets little moisture, but I seemed to thrive on the wet weather that year in Italy.

 A group of tourists out and about despite the rain.  

A group of tourists out and about despite the rain.  

 I've never had quite such a long rainy spell on my return visits. April is usually beautiful, cool to warm with only scattered showers. Last year's spring brought a perfect mix of warm and sunny days along with cooler days with a little rain. Only a few times did the rain last for even a half day. There was one morning though that was cloudy with several hours of steady rain - making it the perfect time for a walk through Lucca, ombrello (umbrella) in hand, enjoying the wet weather. 

 Rainy days bring out lots of color as umbrellas brighten the dark skies. 

Rainy days bring out lots of color as umbrellas brighten the dark skies. 

 Bicycles, a common form of transportation, don't stop for the rain.  

Bicycles, a common form of transportation, don't stop for the rain.  

 And the flower market continues under  ombrellones  (big umbrellas).

And the flower market continues under ombrellones (big umbrellas).

 Italians look stylish, even in raingear.

Italians look stylish, even in raingear.

 The city reflected in a wet street.  

The city reflected in a wet street.  

Eventually the rain stopped, the skies turned blue, and the sun came out. I enjoyed the sun, but I'll look forward to the next rainy day, perhaps this month when I return to spend an Italian spring in Lucca.  -post by JB