Flirting with Florence

The great thing about seeing a great city for the second or third time is that you are no longer obliged to see again all the great things that appear on all the great lists.

So it was with Florence today.

Imagine being a 25-minute train ride away, and spending five hours in a very leisurely way in this sublime city. No standing in long lines, rushing through palaces, or wishing you had made reservations a month ago.

No, we did not have that kind of a day. In fact, we had a day that was partly spent shopping for items made of leather. And what better place than Florence?

To palaces and galleries Pitti, Uffizi and de Medici, we waved and popped into courtyards.

To the Duomo and the Baptistery, we bowed in awe.

To faux David, we winked. With the Ponte Vecchio, we commiserated about how we have both aged since last we met.

And to the general mass of tourists, we waved “Ciao” as we skipped down the streets they weren’t frequenting.

All in all, a great way to refresh our acquaintance with this great city.

Don’s Food Corner

We knew in advance that we were going to breeze in and out of Florence for a quick visit and had no intention of lingering over a full meal.  Actually, how could anything beat yesterday’s stunner?

We tucked into a recommended “cafe” with a beautiful view of a piazza near the Duomo.  Well, our simple plans turned into a torture, with snotty and slow service.  I had an overpriced pizza ($14!); Jo had a salad of a bunch of stuff including ham and, interestingly, Philadelphia cream cheese – which is seen everywhere in Italy — in delis, grocery stores, in little containers in snack shops. Of all the cheeses of Italy, the Italians find Philadelphia cream cheese an exotic import?  As they say, go know.

We waited and waited to order, then we waited and waited to get the food and, worse, we waved our arms to try to get the check and then waited and waited to get it and to pay.  A total waste of time and calories.


2 thoughts on “Flirting with Florence

  1. What a liberating day! No art, no treasures, no palazzos, no old relics…( There’s a cheap joke in there but I’ll hold back). I just hope that all that waving and popping in and winking and skipping has nothing to do with the photo story in today’s Guardian where they report that on the day of your visit one of the city streets collapsed into the Arno.

  2. Maybe we shouldn’t have walked by there right after lunch? And maybe we are past our skipping prime. Two Brits in Ferrara just told us about it and we only this minute saw the pictures. At least they didn’t blame us – which is a commendable attitude.

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