Florence, Itlay

Outside my third-floor window in a hotel in Florence, just across from Firenze Santa Maria Novella Station, the homeless set up their bedroom just before dusk.  Mattress laid out, colourful blankets thrown on top with one swift double-armed flick. A small group of men and women of indistinguishably age, settled in for the night.  As they jostled for positions along the wall they began to argue. Soon their argument drew the attention of passers by, whose heads would turn looking for the source of the outburst. Finally, with a flurry of arm movements that resembled a heavy swan trying to take off, one of the group marched off tossing angry words back over his shoulder as he headed around the corner out of sight.  In the morning, before the sun has taken hold of the Florence morning, they were all gone…no sign of the nocturnal street dwellers.


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