Church Bells and Campanile
One of the great things about Italy is the sound of church bells echoing across the countryside and reverating throughout the cities. Some are tinny and almost tinkling sounding; others are full and resonant, like those of the Cathedral of Sant’Emidio, here in Ascoli. Bells can sound out celebrations and can announce sadness. One day, as we crossed the piazza, the bells started to toll, but not in a normal call-to-mass way. It was, instead, a very rhythmic one clang at a time ring, with a pause between each toll. It was eerie and truly mournful. I had goose bumps. We learned that it was a tribute to the Cardinal whose funeral would take place later in the day.
Pealing bells are a continuity across the peninsula which always make me stop and breathe in, knowing that the sound means, yes, I am in Italy. The towers which house the bells are remarkable and beautiful architectural highlights in many towns. Campanile rising above the piazza stand like sentinels, guardians and witnesses to the history and lives of those below.