It’s a strange and notably hairy day in Trieste. Wherever I wander through this northern Italian port city I see plenty of pooches on parade. It’s as if Canis lupus familiaris has become the must-have fashion accessory. And like most stylish Italian accoutrements such as handbags, sunglasses and shoes, the dogs of Trieste are fashioned in all shapes and sizes, much like their owners.
A social hub of this relaxed Adriatic city is the Canal Grande, an excavated channel that served as harbour for merchant sailing ships in the late 19th Century. Crossing the porto rosso, a bridge straddling the canal, I pass a bronze statue of Irish author James Joyce who, while living here, wrote the final chapters of Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.
And while resident, Joyce also wrote his play Exiles, conceived his most famous book Ulysses, and also penned his prose poem Giacomo Joyce, the only Joycean work set in Trieste. But I don’t think Joyce ever wrote a word about the local pooch passeggiata. But then every picture tells a story ….