Busy day in Florence. Off to Siena.

This is not a travelogue per se, but the unedited emails I sent home using a Blackberry to friends and family while I was away.

Saturday, November 4, 2006

Woke up late today. My bed was just way too comfortable. I got up at 830. Packed and prepared a few things for the day. I should have done it the night before but I was too tired. I almost didn’t make it through frasier!

Breakfast was ending when I got down stairs. No matter. Just more bread. Alimandi has spoiled me.

I had a south beach bar and headed out. My goal today was walking. I had to make sure I knew the best way to get to and from each church, museum, restaurant, etc. And now I do. I just hope I remember. I took lots of pictures and notes. I can’t get lost with 28 people.

Speaking of 28 people. I saw a tour group today with 30. Now I’m really nervous. That’s a lot of people.

Florence is celebrating -actually that’s the wrong word- maybe remembering the flood of Nov. 6 1966. Kind of like our new orleans flood. The river rose and flooded the city. Lots of stuff in museums and churches were ruined. Mud was 6 feet high in some places. So they have all these exhibits and video displays throughout the city.

They are also celebrating police and fire and medical people. So there was a big exhibit of police cars fire engines, rescue dogs, ambulances… In santa croce square and out side the uffizi. They even had a helicopter. It was one of those one man helicopters where they sit in the glass bubble. I was able to get right up next to it and look around.

Once I finished all my work I had a few hours before my train so I went to the duomo museum. I did not know until I was researching this trip that they have all the original art and statues there. I’ve never seen so many relics. And they have Michelangelo’s pieta (the florence edition) I was all alone with it. I probably could have touched it, but I didn’t. Its not like the vatican one behind glass. It’s just right there on the floor. It was a great uncrowded and warm museum.

I made a quick stop at vivolis for another gelato -they are open from 700 AM to midnight. Who eats ice cream at 7 AM?

Then to the train.

It gets dark here at 530. So it was dark when I arrived.

The hotel is right beside the soccer stadium. And there was a match just starting. The place was packed and loud. It looked fun. If my room was one door over I could have watched the game from my bed. Kind of like being able to watch a pro football game from your house. The hotel has a public balcony overlooking the field. You can tell the stadium tried to hid from things like that. They put up banners and plant bushes making it hard to see.

I was able to get to one church and St. Catherine’s house before they closed. I saw her head and finger at the church.

Then walked around.

Tomorrow is another busy day and I’m sleepy.

Love you all.

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