ITALY - Karen Hutton Photography
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Fontebranda, Siena

This is The Fontebranda fountain, or ye olde watering hole in Siena.

I didn't know its history at the time - although figured it was a cistern of some kind - but I fell in love with its  fantastic-ness of color, texture and reflectionary wonder!

Turns out, it was RE-built in 1246, right under the Basilica of San Domenico (ye olde basilica of St. Catherine fame). Here's how it worked: in the first area  - or basin - one could obtain drinking water. Apparently this was the di rigueur protocol for Medieval fountains of Siena back in the day.

The second basin was utilized as a watering place for animals and the third, even lower, as a toilet. I was happy to have stumbled upon #1, not #3, if you get my medieval drift. 

I just love happening upon something cool and artistically fun like this - then later discovering its mysterious, watery past. And that it was the top part of a toilet. Now that's unique.

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