Sunday, October 13, 2013

Saturday + {Day Twenty-Six: Florence}

After getting a good twelve hours of sleep, Gooligan and I woke fresh and ready for our first real day in Florence! We started the day at the Museum Stibbert.

 Stibbert was this guy who inherited a mansion and a lot of money and spent his life collecting everything -- and I mean everything. For eight euro each we got an hour long tour of the rooms of his house. Each and every room is elegant in and of itself, but they are also filled from floor to ceiling with things: endless armor, statues, mannequins of horses and people wearing armor, swords, guns, shields, tapestries, etc. There's also china, paintings, and a whole wing of Japanese items. Basically it was like a tour of a well-organized, very rich hoarder's house. The guy had such an addiction that when he ran out of room he built a whole new wing to keep adding to his collection. On his death the house and grounds (huge gardens) and everything in the house went to the city. Amazing!

After the museum, we took the bus down the hill and found a cute restaurant for lunch. The food was delicious--I got a cream/egg sauce--but the waitstaff was a little cold. Still, any day I get to have lunch with the most beautiful girl in the world is a great day!

And what lunch is complete without a wonderful stop for gelato after! Gooligan and I finally found the best gelato in Florence--perhaps the best in all of Italy. We were both incredibly impressed. They have a lot of the standard flavors, but also some very unique ones too! Gooligan got cinnamon and apple (basically tastes like apple pie, mmm) while I ordered chianti (so interesting) and crema (eggs + milk). They also make their waffle cones right in front of you. So, so good.

 After gelato, we wandered through the city looking at all the artisan crafts, then went looking for a park to sit for a bit. We found this beautiful place next to the river Arno. It's an urban park area that looks out on a sort of lock or urban waterfall. So beautiful, especially at sunset.

Gooligan read some of The Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler to me while we sat by the river. We finished it! So good. Also a perfect read for our trip because the book discusses a found work by Michaelangelo, Rome, Florence, traveling, and budgets--plus it's just a delightful read.


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