The sunflowers were just starting to think about tilting upward for the day.
The grapevines are in full leafy cover over most every sidewalk in the neighborhood right now. In fact, as I write this, our neighbors are harvesting their family's grapes just to the right of our front door. The younger men of the family are up on tall ladders, gently cutting and placing red and green grapes into plastic buckets as the neighbor kids run underneath the vines.
As we exit our immediate neighborhood and step onto a sidewalk of a busier street in the city, we pass and snap a picture of one of our favorite cars in the world. On nearly every early morning walk we smile and say hello to the Led Zeppelin car. (The thing is a teeny, tiny, beat up tin can of a car and there's no way my family of five would ever stand a chance fitting into it. But, I still dream that someday a car this 'cute' will be mine. I even like it's little rusty spots.).
We keep walking and eventually come across a favorite metro station. The kids run up and down the stairs and we walk on as we're still less than halfway to our final destination...
We pass our local (fantastically great) gelato store and the kids try to explain why it's not really too early for ice cream. The baby, still firmly in the backpack, yells 'bite, bite, bite!!!!' with great excitement into my ear. (We laugh and walk on...)
The leafy trees fan out overhead and we enjoy the lack of traffic due to the early hour. In this city, the drivers are crazy and sometimes you feel like a moving target as a pedestrian. Walks are always more pleasant early, when the streets are relatively quiet. But, the yellow mini buses that dominate the roads at all hours of the day (and serve as public transportation) are already out and shuttling passengers throughout the city.
And, down the stairs from the sidewalk we go and to one of the city's many underpasses. Hold your breath (the air is not to pleasant) and adjust your sunglasses (it's dark and, honestly, a tad bit creepy!).
We're out and onto the other side. Time to climb another set of stairs, venture onto the other side and take in the view of Heroes Square (one of the main traffic circles in the city).
And, there's Heroes Square, with it's giant plastic tubed monument that glows in the night. We're only halfway through the walk, so come back for the next posting to see where we ended up. Hint: it's yummy.