Yesterday, we had dinner with an old friend. Krysta French and her husband Eric are spending their honeymoon in Italy. We convinced them to swing by Perugia for a visit. It was beyond wonderful to spend time with friends after our long week so far away from home.
Before we sat down to eat, we thought we’d show them around. Since we are brand new to the city, there wasn’t much to point out besides a couple restaurants, the bank and the laundry mat. However, there is one impressive tourist site we remembered from our reconnaissance visit in April. The boys hadn’t seen it yet either, so we took a walk to the underground city.
Hundreds of years ago, shortly after the Salt War, which inspired Perugia’s tasteless bread, the Pope sought some revenge. He directed his army to pay a holy visit to this city and destroy it. The soldiers arrived and somehow managed to bury the ruling families’ homes and buildings and leave everyone for dead. (I think somebody needs to go to confession . . .) The Pope then erected a monument on top of the destruction and claimed victory. Ever irreverent and always the ones to have the last word, the Perugians snidely referred to his structure as La Rocca “the rock”. Later on, once the Pope was out of town, the Perugians destroyed La Rocca.
Now, the underground city has been excavated and one may walk through its ancient corridors and stop for photos under the arches.