Skip to main content

Padua


Basilica of St. Anthony

Prayer to St. Anthony of Padua
Blessed be God in His angels and in His saints.
O Holy St. Anthony, gentlest of Saints, your love for God and charity for His creatures made you worthy, when on earth, to possess miraculous powers. Miracles waited on your word, which you were ever ready to speak for those in trouble or anxiety. Encouraged by this thought, I implore you to obtain for me (your request). The answer to my prayer may require a miracle. Even so, you are the saint of miracles. Amen.

My purpose in visiting Padua was to pray at the tomb of St. Anthony in the Basilica dell'Santo, which fortunately was across the street from our hotel. I've been planning to make this pilgrimage for a long time and while I've visited neighboring Venice a few times, I never did make it to Padua until recently. We attended mass at the Basilica on the day we arrived along with pilgrims from Rovigo, Italy who were that day's sponsor of the Eucharistic celebration. We learned later that there are 13 days of special masses in early evening preceding the feast of St. Anthony which falls on June 13 and devotees from surrounding towns make the pilgrimage to Padua on each of those days. St. Anthony was born into a wealthy family in Lisbon, Portugal but he chose to live a simple life in the service of our Lord. St. Anthony is the patron saint of lost articles.

Gattamelata by Donatello

Donatello lived here

While taking art history lessons in college, I was introduced to Donatello and his masterpiece, Gattamelata, an equestrian statue of Erasmo da Narni, a condottiero (mercenary leader) who served under the Republic of Venice. His family commissioned this sculpture after his death in 1443 to honor him. It soars above Piazza del Santo, in front of the Basilica. This is the first Renaissance equestrian statue. I wasn't  aware that Donatello lived in the house within site of the statue. There is a marker on the front façade of the house that indicates his stay around 1450. A local kindly pointed this out to me. What a pleasant surprise!

Prato del Valle

Though we could have walked to the center of town, we took the tram from Piazza Prato dell Valle which is a vast square populated by a myriad statues and is the site of a Sunday outdoor market. We wanted to dine at Caffè Pedrocchi but alas, it was hosting a conference and closed to the public. So we walked to Piazza delle Erbe for a view of the 13th century Palazzo Ragione. This square and the Piazza della Frutta on the other side of the palazzo is occupied by stalls selling clothing and accessories, home goods and fresh produce during the day. The squares are peaceful in the evenings when the stalls are gone and the locals take possession once more of their piazza and the bambini can ride their bicycles without obstacles.

Palazzo Ragione (Palace of Reason)

It's worth roaming the center of town at night to see Padua from a different perspective. The silhouettes are enchanting!

Where to stay: 
Casa del Pellegrino
Via Cesarotti, 21
Padua

Getting around:
We found the tram efficient, safe and clean.  A ticket costs €1.20 and may be purchased at the coin operated machines on the main tram stops. The tram connects the Basilica dell'Santo with Palazzo Ragione, the train station, the Scrovegni Chapel. It operates till 11 pm.

Where to dine:
Osteria al Peronio on Piazza della Frutta. I ordered their grilled swordfish and it was fresh, simply prepared and tasty. They also serve a variety of salads in generous portions. Peronio is also a pizzeria. Attentive and friendly service a plus.


Most restaurants in Italy have a cover charge which ranges from €2 to €3 (or more) per diner.

* * *

Images by Charie



Popular posts from this blog

Adare, Ireland's Prettiest Village

Thatched-roof cottages
Twenty minutes south of Limerick City on the River Maigue is Ireland's prettiest village, Adare. It's a small town, pleasantly quiet even in mid July, at the height of the tourist season. There was a celebrity classic golf tournament going on at the exclusive Adare Manor Golf Course during my visit. But thankfully, this did not bring in the crowds.

Augustinian Priory
It's an easy stroll from the Augustinian Priory to Bill Chawke's Lounge Bar on the opposite end of town.  Centuries old thatched roof cottages, medieval monasteries, vine covered townhouses, the Adare Town Park and the quintessential Irish pubs line Main Street. There's no need to rush. All these places invite visitors to linger and savor the moment.

At Bill Chawke's the kegs are full and ready to be served. But before saying your first "sláinte!" (to your health), consider walking the extra mile or so to the ruins of Desmond Castle, north of Adare Manor. It dates bac…

Bargain Shopping in Greenhills, Metro Manila

At Greenhills indoor flea market, you will find santos (religious statues), costume jewelry, authentic South Seas pearls, clothes, shoes, knock off branded handbags, Oriental furnishings, Christmas decorations, paintings, souvenirs and linens. There are stalls upon stalls of goods and you walk down narrow aisles teeming with shoppers who are at this moment doing their Christmas shopping.


I was particulary interested in new costume jewelry trends and there are a variety of stones and glass beads on display. The latest is a headband made of shiny glass beads, a unique party accessory. I was pleased to find wood carvings and paintings at much more reasonable prices than elsewhere in the city, except in Divisoria which I have yet to check out.


Weekends and holidays are the worst times to come though you can shop their night market during the holidays. Crowds notwithstanding, I plan to spend more time shopping for home furnishings at Greenhills after the holidays.

* * *

Photos by Charie

Carlos "Botong" Francisco, A Nation Imagined

Carlos "Botong" Francisco, FILIPINO STRUGGLES THROUGH HISTORY Oil on canvas, 1964, (located at ManilaCity Hall) A National Cultural Treasure owned by the City of Manila
Carlos Botong Francisco: A Nation Imagined is the latest art installation at the AyalaMuseum in Makati to celebrate the 100th birthday anniversary of Carlos “Botong” Francisco (1912-1969), a Philippine National Artist. Forty paintings and lithographs were culled from various private collections to form this exhibition. Of the large scale paintings on display, Maria Makiling and Fiesta, both oil on canvas, are representative of the indigenous genre which Botong loved to portray. In Maria Makiling, Botong reveals a relaxed and recumbent woman with her legs dangling in the cool waters of the stream and playing with an exotic deer by her side. Fiesta is about how the Filipino people gather to celebrate an important occasion, be that a religious feast or a wedding. The central figures are dancing the tinikling, a po…