A truly pleasant way of reaching the town centre from the Godo district is along the pedestrian path, Via Monte Glemina.
From Piazzetta della Fontana di Silans, the path rises among the meadows and then passes along the edge of the steep ridge of Mount Glemine, right below Cjase dai Cuarvats*, to emerge at Porta Udine, below Gemona Cathedral.
After the first section, set between tall boundary walls recently rebuilt by volunteers from Godo to replace the walls that collapsed in the earthquake, the path comes to the pit into which the waterfall of the Glemineit creek plunges.
THE INCREDIBLE SPECTACLE OF THE DISAPPEARING CREEK
On the basis of some mysterious logic inscribed within the bowels of the mountain (most likely an as-yet undiscovered underground siphon), the Glemineit suddenly appears on the occasion of heavy rainfalls, offering a breath-taking spectacle heralded by a characteristic rumble that the locals have learned to recognise.
Emerging practically at the top of the mountain, the waterfall drops noisily into the pipe above the tunnel in Via Udine and then slips into the ditch beside Via Glemina, below which it passes before descending more gently to the valley through an efficient network of drainage canals.
Sulla destra, prima del ponticciolo sotto cui scorre il Glemineit, si nota una semplice costruzione in pietra appartata recentemente sistemata da volontari. È questo un “cesso” (dal latino “secessus“, che significa appunto “appartato”) come riporta la scritta sulla porta, ovvero la latrina che serviva a chi lavorava ai lavatoi.
WASHTUBS (LAVADÔRS), MILLS AND IRRIGATION SYSTEMS: WATER IN GEMONA
The tunnel in Via Udine, built after the earthquake, rests on a massive wall built since the second half of the sixteenth century to support the high road to Artegna. After this, at the bottom of the wall, a washtub was built near the source of the Glemina. The intention was to move to this location outside the walls not only the washing of the town’s laundry but the tanning of hides and the slaughter of farm animals. It was considered unhygienic to allow men and animals to continue drinking from the public fountains in the town centre.
Like the washtub visible now, the Lavadôr consisted of a central canal with washboards on either side.
A wooden roof was added shortly thereafter, but it was not until 1836 that it took on its present form, with three arches on each side and a stone roof.
The Lavadôr has been part of a complicated waterworks system since the Middle Ages. The source of the Glemina supplied not only the washtub but a mill and a series of little canals setting out from an octagonal tank for the irrigation of the terraced “broili” on the slopes towards Godo. The washtub and canals are no longer used, but they are clearly visible across from the Lavadôr, beyond the fence along the road rising steeply along a recently paved stretch.
*House for crows, linked with the legend of the “Sassìn di strade”
bibliography: G.Marini, “Il lavatoio del Glemine”, ed. Città di Gemona del Friuli, 2011.