Postcard From Forte dei Marmi, Part Three: The Pier

POSTCARD FROM MARTINCOONEY.COM

Postcard from Forte dei Marmi, Part Three

The Pier

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

To conclude my birthday in Forte dei Marmi I made the seemingly obvious decision to follow the broad main avenue leading arrow straight towards the pier.

Window Shopping in Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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Window Shopping in Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

Artfully laid and impeccably maintained the entire sidewalk comprised of a checkerboard of marble squares.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

At about the half-way mark the afternoon was to take on a delightful new twist as I stumbled across a veritable marble/maritime walking museum.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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 The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

The incredibly detailed bas relief carving told a story of the pier as it would have looked perhaps 100 or 150 years ago.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

I was soon to learn the importance and significance of the giant winch. But hat’s off to the sculptors. Such lovely work, even the planking looks appropriately hand-hewn and wobbly.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

I hadn’t stepped more than a few yards when the next history lesson presented itself, and this time we actually get to see the remains of the winch itself as well as further historical depictions in the same marvelously rich and detailed bas relief.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

This time around we get to see the actual spot on which we are standing as it looked a little over a century ago. Fortunately the sun aligned itself perfectly in highlighting the exquisitely carved oxen and their drivers.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

And yes, those two men do seem to be sawing marble by hand – not an enviable task at all.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

The plinth supporting the winch was carved on three sides with the most wonderful and historically accurate account of Forte dei Marmi’s past, each retelling essentially depicting and reasserting the life-like imagery.

It must have been an amazing sight to see how efficient and organized they were to load those big heavy blocks of marble onto what, I should imagine to be, a never-ending and impatient flotilla of merchant ships.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

Crossing the promenade it was a delight to be greeted by the pier’s wide, stylish, cool and refreshing entrance.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

Very nice.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

How lovely it was to stand at the very end of the pier,  just a few feet over those waters, and simply gaze out towards that horizon.

With the Mediterranean Sea air warmed by a late April afternoon sun it was time for one long last lingering look landward before retracing my steps to board the same meandering bus that brought me, back to Pietrasanta and the splendid Da Pio Guest House.

With the evening’s celebrations at Bar Avio, (World’s Best Bar) yet to come all I can say is “what a lovely birthday it was… indeed”.

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

Thanks for stopping by.

Until next time.

Cheers !

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

Martin

The Pier at Forte dei Marmi by MARTIN COONEY

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