Friday, May 23, 2008

Welcome to Firenze

From the outside it looks small, one room, postcards and olive oil, but from the back another room extends, canned goods mostly, frozen fish. From there a corridor, portraits showing hairstyles which may be available and then more rooms: party supplies, keys and shoe repair, erotic novelties, live fish.

What sort of shop is this anyway? What did the sign say? A little courtyard with overgrown roses leads to a very narrow corridor. A man coming the other way mutters, shoves past scowling. Maybe you shouldn’t be here at all.

When the next man comes you make yourself as small as you can. He winks and grins so gorgeously, so lasciviously, you just about lose consciousness.

What kind of place is this anyway? Do you need a ticket, a hard hat, a condom? One room leads inexorably, improbably, to the next. What was it you were looking for? Meanwhile, here is another room --

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