National Geographic : 1956 Jun
formations, and underground rivers that break without warning into the open air. In the city itself, roads cut swiftly upward past stately build ings like the gleaming white Uni versity of Trieste, and villas half hidden in the pines. Here red and yellow blooms flare vividly in plant ings that defy the inhospitable terrain. Modern life shows nearly every where-big American cars, new apartments, shops, and movie thea ters, neon signs, the bustling annual Trieste Fair with glittering exhibits from many lands. And always the cosmopolitan city carries on its tra dition of official receptions, formal events, and banquets. 857 + "But How Beautiful!" Expressive Hands Accent a Triestina's Delight Trieste's people reflect the distillation of a dozen civilizations. Romans, Goths, Byzantines, Lombards, Franks, Venetians, French, Austrians, Italians, Germans, and Yugoslavs have all ruled the city and left their imprints. Yet the Triestino remains himself: brisk, genially pessimistic, and determined to enjoy life between recurring crises. Yet only a short distance outside of Trieste many villagers may still be seen bartering produce as their grandparents did. On my last day in the region I saw a demonstration of the way the old continues along side the new. I had clambered down from a bus with an Italian friend when we saw a neatly dressed, well-coiffured young woman having trouble get ting off. With her she had a large bag of cement. Like Southern gentlemen (one from the Deep South of the United States, the other from southern Europe) we bent forward to carry it for her. We could barely budge it. She laughed and pointed to her head. "It goes up here." With many grunts we lifted it there. She gave it a pat and went off, balancing it with ease.