places i have been

Florence, Italy - 7/29

posted 7/31/03

That's the Pont Vecchio behind us - taken from the deck at the Lugarno Hotel in the Oltrarno District

Sometimes you can find a vent blowing cold air right out on the street!

A very small door indeed...

something a bit larger, perhaps?

Or perhaps something quite humungous? (This is the one that used to keep the barbarians out of the city)

Things We Have Seen
Day Two

is a Monday so many of the "biggies" are closed. Even so, after a good morning's work on the computer we inhale

The Science Museum

We (er... FRED) knows that area now so getting around is faster. This museum is a special treat for gadget guy Fred who could not leave until he had gone back to figure out exactly what task some old gizmo was designed to accomplish. It was very hot in there (no ac) and they did not allow photos to be taken.

We crossed the Ponte Vecchio - it was quite nightmarelike. Too many people and of little interest to someone who is not enamored with gold and/or silver jewelry. But it is old and would seem to be one of those things one needs to see when one is in Florence.

It was a good day to do RS' "Oltrarno Walk." This is the area south of the Arno River - lots of artisans shops and interesting architectural elements -- we present here for your enjoyment a series of door photos - see anything that... fits?

We did a midday detour to the Brancacci chapel to catch Massaccio's frescos. The pre-showing video was informative and entertaining - but the heat made Fred feel ill and me drowsy. The frescos are located in a lovely old chapel - only 25 people or so are let in at one time and you only get 15 minutes so you better look fast. I was trying to follow along with RS's guided tour but ran out of time about halfway through the St. Peter Doing a Miracle panel.... bummer.

Just before they kicked us out of the chapel, Fred snapped a few shots. The chapel is dimly lit and the people in charge do not allow flashes so - even though Freddy was steady the shots are blurry...

The angry hornet buzzing of vespas was enough to make me start climbing the proverbial wall...

The courtyard was cool and sculpture-rich so we sat for a while and poured ourselves the first glass of white for the day before returning to the Oltrarno stroll to the old city walls (where we found the giganto door!)

We followed the wall to the river where we found a shady spot under a bridge. This turned out to be a highlight of the trip. We had a great view of the Pont Vecchio (without the crowds) and the river and its dam

and we drank some more wine and talked and ended up spending a couple of hours there - just what we needed to hang out until restaurants started reopening for the dinner hour (19:00)

Below - using the camera's auto timer we were able to capture a pretty good shot of the two of us chilling out under the bridge.

It took much wine to get us home in the dark that night...

Now _that's a SMALL car!

Dinner was at Trattoria Sabatino - right outside the city wall - a suggestion of RS and a most excellent one at that. More tasty food than we could eat at a very reasonable price, surrounded by locals with only a few tourists (yeah, we can guess what guidebook _they read as well).

Fortified with more wine (half a litre with dinner) we decided to forego the bus system yet again and walked all the way back to the casa - about an hour.

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