Taking In Firenze

Growing up, I never realized that Italian cities have Italian names – and they aren’t the names we learn in English. Florence is Firenze. But its people are Florentines. Go figure.

At any rate, MB and I are getting used to hearing the word “Firenze” and today we split up to take in two of its major attractions. I went to the Uffizi Gallery and she went to the Academia. Afterwards we met at a cafe to compare notes. MB was less than thrilled with her visit but she did get to see the “real” David. The one we ogled in the piazza yesterday is actually a reproduction.

I expected to be a bit more impressed with the Uffizi collection – it is an amazing representation of paintings from as far back as the 1300s and 1400s. But I found them to be overly dark and religious. Of course the Church and the State at the time funded and commissioned a lot of these pieces, so there are more biblical scenes than you ever imagined.

But the drawing and technique is so masterful. I wondered what those artists would have painted if they had had a choice. And then there is the gallery itself. It is MASSIVE. With more stairs to climb than should be legal. I was so exhausted when I finished walking through that I wasn’t sure I could make it to meet up with MB. But two advil and a prosecco gave me a boost.

ImageWe were both knackered from walking so sat in the cafe even after they closed for the afternoon siesta. MB wanted me to draw in my sketchbook so I worked on a small pencil study of a nearby statue. It was a nice way to rest our feet for a while.

Then we did take off for some more window shopping and ended up back on the Ponte Vecchio Bridge. It spans the Arno river and is completely lined with high end jewelry shops. Gold, silver, diamonds and stones everywhere. And the bridge is packed with people. But I can’t say I actually saw anyone buying anything in the shops. Makes me wonder how they stay in business – and carry so much inventory!

ImageComing back it was getting dark and the view from the bridge was stunning. Here’s a photo of us looking in the direction of our hotel, which is on the street on the left. Great location and not too bad for walking everywhere we want to go.

So tomorrow we plan to take in Boboli gardens before catching the train back to Lucca. (more walking!)

I’m still struggling with my feet but am managing to keep going. Mary Beth only brought one pair of shoes to Firenze – high heeled boots! She glides over the cobblestones at a brisk pace, even when she’s on the phone trying to call home, and never misses a beat. And I, in my ortho shoes with special inserts, always fall behind. Unless I buy MB a gelato. That’s the only thing that slows her down to my pace.

Mrs. P does have her tricks…

5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. bdauby
    Oct 17, 2012 @ 23:21:36

    Well Middletown is known by some as Vail City, and the people are called Middies. And the only difference between downtown Vail City and Firenze are the finely chiseled butts – unless I happen to be walking through town. Ha ha you walked into that one!

    Sounds like you are making the most of the city, it’s beauty and charm are undeniable!

    Reply

  2. Paula
    Oct 18, 2012 @ 14:51:33

    Hey Starr Lynn!!! Brad sent me your blog. I’ve spent a good part of today reading and couldn’t stop until I’d finished. You should definitly puplish this with your sketches. I am sooooo happy for you to be doing this wonderfully “divine” trip! You are the person do write about i. It reads like a novel. Have you thought about going in service to see what thats like? Look forward to your next blog!! Much love to you Lynny! ENJOY!!!

    Reply

    • thesketchylife
      Oct 18, 2012 @ 19:15:02

      Thank you Paula! I’m so glad you’re here on the blog! I do have some contacts at the local hall, so we’ll see what transpires. Stay tuned! You never know! Love you…

      Reply

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