To rest my eyes once again upon Michelangelo’s breathtakingly beautiful David, residing safely in his relatively new environment in The Accademia was certainly something beyond special on my birthday. I spent over an hour just savoring him from every angle.  The Accademia has benches along the wall of his backside so that one may rest there and “enjoy the view”. I partook in that as well as much lingering while viewing his frontside.

So far, so good in this ringing in of my 50th!

I had assured my friends at the wine bar, Eduardo and Manuelo, that I would stop in for a glass before dinner that evening.


I did so and I treated myself to a glass of Brunello di Montalcino.  It is my absolute favorite wine.  I often say that the moment that I fell in love with wine was the moment that Brunello first passed my lips. Ironically, that moment occurred in a fabulous Italian restaurant in Chicago many years ago.

Next, off to Ristorante Oliviero for dinner.

I walked across the Arno, found the little street on which the restaurant was located, and walked in.

The host welcomed me, seated me and handed me a menu.  There I was in a foreign country, alone, at a restaurant that I had found by chance.  I did not know why I was there, what had brought me there nor compelled me to be there, but there I found myself. I then opened the menu and nearly fell off my chair.  This is what the menu read.


Think about it.  What on earth are the chances of being alone in a foreign country at a random restaurant alone on your 50th birthday and seeing YOUR birth year on the menu???

OK-not arguing with anything at that point.  I was meant to be right there at that moment.  Whatever happened after that moment I was simply open to. Fate it was.