Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dry Stone Wall

Prickly pear plants, stones and wild daisies on a country lane.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Church Gates

These gates block entry to the Madonna della Pace church. They are opened for mass and in the evening when the priest is around to attend to church business. Before living in Italy I had a romantic and naive idea that churches were always open, ready to welcome the person in the grips of a spiritual crisis. But, no, they have opening and closing hours, too.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Heart Filled with Light

Local ceramics tend to have very simple designs painted on them.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Heart of Stone

Is it just me, or does that rock on the right look heart-shaped?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Mystery Revealed No. 5

Behind that barbed wire and slivers of embedded glass lie...that's right...preschool children! But, the real mystery is whether the elaborate defense system exists to keep us out, or to keep them in? As a mother, I have my doubts! Just joking...

No, the real mystery is who is this Father Hannibal of France? And, am I the only one who has unpleasant associations with the name Hannibal? And would be hesitant to leave my children in his care? Just joking, again...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mystery Photo no. 5

The challenge in this Mystery Photo is to guess what lies behind this high wall protected not only by barbed wire, but also by imbedded slivers of sharp broken glass. I've always wondered what kind of gloves the guys who stick the glass in the cement wear! One clue (that won't actually help you guess, but I feel compelled by honesty to tell you): this photo was shot in Bari, not Molfetta. My son tells me that it's not a fair Mystery Photo because it should be something from Molfetta, but I could not resist this one...c'mon, Bari is *near* Molfetta.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Beach Closed

I've got those "end of March-can't wait for summer" blues pretty bad these days. The warmer weather is almost here...but still just out of reach...and it feels like I'll be wearing my winter coat *forever*!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Ferus the Pub

Saturday night we went out for a pizza with friends in Bisceglie (the next town up the Adriatic coast) at "Ferus the Pub." This pizzeria/restaurant/pub is located in a 16th century stone structure that is attached to the Aragonese walls of the local castle. The interior decor is modelled on a medieval look, complete with a suit of armor, crossed lances and bronze shields, phony torches and tapestries on the wall.

I found it strange to be in the sort of imitation historical setting that I would expect to find at...Disneyland let's say. Like, here we are in Italy, pretending to be in...Italy. Hmmm.

In any case, the beer (German) and the grilled meat were very good, but the pizza was only so-so.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Caffé Sottocoperta

To celebrate the "first day of Spring" yesterday a friend and I went out for a delicious cup of hot chocolate. We had to laugh at ourselves for drinking hot chocolate at this time of year, but it seems that winter has returned, at least for the past few days. Temperatures have dropped dramatically, the wind has picked up and it's been raining on and off day and night.

The hot chocolate was excellent and so dense we had to eat it with a spoon, rather than drink it! The owner of the caffé, Franco, explained that it is produced by a company called Eraclea that is rather selective about which establishments it allows to serve its product.

The Sotto Coperta (which means "below deck" in Italian) has an outdoor area with tables, for drier, warmer weather, and a lovely view of the sea to the rear. It is one of the few bars in Molfetta that offer a relaxing and pleasant environment in which to have a coffee and chat with friends.

Saturday, March 21, 2009


Ivo was a stray, rescued from a hard life on the street by my neighbors in the apartment building where we used to live. Since then he has been well-fed, greatly loved and much walked. His owner, or his son (the owner's son, not Ivo's son!), walk him at least four times a day. You can find them out and about all over the south side of town.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Pruned to the Bone

I have been enjoying the "bad tree" series on Liege Daily Photo and couldn't believe my eyes when I discovered that trees have been punished in Molfetta, too! All of the trees along the seafront have been pruned so drastically they look positively stunted. But, I know green leaves will be sprouting forth soon. The sooner the better!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Reef - Up Close and Personal

The majority of Molfettans profess a distinct dislike of sand. It's "dirty." It works its way into everything, your towel, your hair, your beach bag, your swimming trunks... But I say, at least it's soft! Try getting comfy on this surface!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


The beach at the Prima Cala (for more photos click here , here and here) has some sections of flat reefs, like these, a wide section of beach lined with large white pebbles (about the size of a potato) and a tiny, tiny area of sand.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


"Cats are kindly masters, just so long as you remember your place."- Paul Gray

Monday, March 16, 2009

Consultorio Femminile

This is the Women's Health Clinic at the Molfetta Hospital. Free ob/gyn treatment is available for women of any economic bracket. I believe they also provide free legal advice for women about separation, divorce and other issues related to women's legal rights. I did an internet search to find more info on the clinic and...hmmm...none was available.

Just discovered this video showing the main sights of Molfetta. Enjoy!

p.s. Thanks so much to Valeria of Verona Daily Photo who taught me how to post bigger photos!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Il Duomo di San Corrado

This is a view of the side entrance to the Duomo, the 12th century church dedicated to Saint Conrad which is located on the harbour and featured in my header photo. This church is considered to be the finest example of Apulian-Romanesque architecture around. Apulian-Romanesque architecture is notable for its clean, almost completely undecorated lines.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Lama Cupa

The seaside territory of Apulia is crossed, from inland toward the sea, by a series of "lame". I'm not sure of the term in English, but these are naturally formed waterways that serve to carry excess water down to the sea in the case of heavy rains. They normally look like dry riverbeds. They are protected natural environments and it is illegal to build in them, which only makes sense...your house might be washed away come the next heavy rain!

Lama Cupa runs through the south side of town and ends at the Prima Cala beach. The bridge in this photo crosses Lama Cupa as you enter into town from the south on Highway 16.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Prima Cala, again

I love the Prima Cala beach in the winter. It's a pretty little inlet and without all the crowds you can appreciate the size of the sea and the sky.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Via Antonio Vivaldi is only one block long and is lined with high-rise apartment buildings (in Molfetta "high-rise" means 5 or 6 floors) that seem to tilt in toward each other across the street in this photo. At the top of the block is the entrance to the Pio XI Regional Seminary.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Does anyone actually send or receive mail anymore?
These mailboxes have become just another surface to stick posters on!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


While very common in central and northern Italy, fog is almost as unusual as snow around here!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Virtus 94 - Palestrina 96

My family are active followers of the local semi-pro basketball team, Virtus Molfetta. This is the first year that the team has moved up into the "semi-pro" category and they are not doing so well. They are in third to last place in the rankings.

Tonight's game was one of those neck-in-neck sort of games with a close score from beginning to end with the teams alternating being ahead by two or three points. In the last two seconds of play, Molfetta scored a three-pointer that would have put us ahead by one point...but it was invalidated by that lousy bum of a referee! The game was a real heart-stopper.

I don't have the right kind of camera for sports action photography, but I liked this shot of the Mofetta Virtus team making a basket.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Hospital Chapel

This is the chapel at the hospital. When a person dies at the hospital the family is obliged to hold the funeral here. You don't get to take Auntie Maria back to your local church. When I was in the hospital in Terlizzi years ago, there was a lovely friar who would come around every day or two and talk to people, pray with them and bless them. I'm not Catholic, but I did find it reassuring to be blessed every so often while in the hospital! Another kind of medicine...

Saturday, March 7, 2009


If you need any blood work done while here in Molfetta, this corner of the local hospital is the place to go. Just don't park your car out front!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Monument to Icarus

This sculpture by southern Italian artist Antonio Paradiso met with much criticism when it was first installed on the port. It is made of three enormous blocks of granite and a Citroen 2CV squished in the middle. Its installation was quite a spectacular event, with tractor trailers and a mobile crane to lift and position the sculptural elements.

It was commissioned during the 1990s by the city as part of a convention on the history of Molfetta's old town. The sculpture is meant to represent the "weight" of history and nature and their contrast with modernity.

The people of Molfetta didn't "get" it. The people of Molfetta didn't like it. The people of Molfetta would stare at it during their Sunday walks along the port and ask, "What the $%@! is that?"

So, rather soon thereafter, the whole, very heavy thing was banished to its current location in a distant corner of town on a triangular bit of sidewalk between Via Pio La Torre and Via Salvo D'Acquisto. That's when the graffiti was added.

If, however, you happen to like large stone sculptures, I highly recommend a visit to Antonio's Sculpture Park in Matera, Basilicata. An amazing town, and Unesco World Heritage site, worth a visit for many reasons.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Barbed Wire

I'm not sure why there is barbed wire on this wall that separates the city swimming pool from the empty lot next to it. Can't imagine why the owners of the empty lot want to keep people out so badly that they put up barbed wire. I mean, the high wall wasn't enough of a deterent? Nor can I imagine why anyone would want to scale this wall from the swimming pool side to get into...the empty lot!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Fishing Boat

This sweet little blue boat is someone's means of support.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


A decorative lamp-post on the port.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Low Tide

A view of Molfetta Vecchia, the old town, taken from the Lungomare, or seafront. For a similar view shot last July and a bit of town history, click here.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Theme Day: Glass

The first day of each month is Theme Day in the City Daily Photo community. This month's theme is "Glass." We don't have any fancy glass high-rises in Molfetta, but this long window caught my eye, as well as a cloud... The photo below shows a full view of the facade of the apartment building. It is located in the "New Area of Expansion" near the intersection of Via Terlizzi and Via Enrico Berlinguer.
Click here to view thumbnails for all participants