Since I have been receiving messages from concerned friends and blog readers, I thought I would post a quick note to say that Florence was not affected by the strong earthquake ( and that struck the city of L’Aquila, the capital of the Abruzzo region, very early this morning. L’Aquila is a 3.5 drive south of Florence, more or less.

It’s very difficult to find words in moments like these. My heart is very heavy, that’s for sure. Horrible horrible tragedy. I was struck by what a dazed survivor told a reporter: “I have lost everything. But I am alive. My family is alive. Life goes on…”