#2, Stresa, Italy
I'm a photographer because I'm an obsessive freak, but I'm a writer first. When you consider that I stayed two nights along Lake Maggiore next door to the Grand Hotel Des Iles Borromees where Hemingway wrote A Farewell to Arms, it's a miracle I managed to notice anything else. I just kept looking out to the misty, alpine-shrouded lake in front of me, then turning around to the grid of elegant windows behind me wondering: is that the room where he stayed? Was this the view from his window? And how ridiculous would it look if I were to stroll into the hotel bar, order a stiff drink and sneak a look at my dog-eared copy of A Moveable Feast? But I had a coconut and pistachio gelato instead and ventured into the town of Stresa, checking out the architecture and hunting for handsome Italians on Vespas numbers.
Every now and then, the composition of a picture somehow reflects the qualities of the number itself. In this case, I like the symmetry of the #2 nestled snugly between two ornate but solid Corinthian columns. The cobalt blue line rings the number, adding a splash of color, while a warm July sun casts sharp shadows on the stone wall. I think I may have even been sideswiped by a scooter, I was so enamored.