Florence 11-25-08

We met Dad this morning in the breakfast room of our hotel around 8:00am and tried to get a guide to take us to see the sites of Florence. They were all busy so we decided to just walk it on our own. We started off walking towards Peruzzi Leather Factory, which is just a few blocks away from where we are staying. Nothing was open yet so we just kind of wandered around for a while. There was a beautiful church, Santa Croce that we came to and took pictures.

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 Once the shops opened up we walked through several of them and then decided to head to a museum that was a short walk away. It was the Del Bargello Museum. We were so impressed by the large doors, Dad put his hand up to it and it was thicker than his hand was long. We were not able to take any pictures inside but we saw some sculptures, paintings, ceramic dishes, all kinds of glass wares. Very fine tooth combs made from ivory, huge rings that belonged to noblemen, intricate ivory carvings, and lots of other artifacts. It was very impressive and we just kept on walking from room to room and spent about two hours there with our mouths hanging open at what we saw.

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When we left this museum we decided to head towards the Galleria Del Accademia where Michelangelo’s David is shown. Along the way close to the Duomo we decided it was time for lunch. We stopped at a trattoria that had a chalk board menu outside with the daily specials. When there is a chalk board menu it means the items are cooked fresh that day. Tony spotted fresh homemade Lasagna and even though he had some last night he wanted more! Ha We all shared a bowl of potato leek soup with blue cheese on top. Oh Boy was that ever good! I had tortellini stuffed with porchini mushrooms with ham and cream sauce. Dad had nocchi with sausage red sauce. We all tasted each others and had a good time. Tony ordered Tiramisu for desert and Dad shared that with him.

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After lunch on our way to see the statue of David we passed some very large ornate doors that Tony took pictures of.

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We couldn’t take any pictures inside the museum but we were so impressed with all the art we saw inside. We can’t figure out how he did all that work in one lifetime! The statue of David is outstanding, really unbelievable in person. It boggles the mind as to how he did it. We spent some time here just wandering and looking at fresco’s that were painted on wood back in the 1500’s and still had bright colors. After leaving there we took a cab to the shopping district and went into Ferragamo’s.  It was on Via De Tornabuoni which was lined with all the world’s major designers. Dad had a sack in his hand and when we came out of Ferragamo’s he said “I better look and make sure this isn’t a Wal-Mart sack! Ha We both commented that when Brandy sees this picture she is gonna think she has something from here! Ha We had tons of fun just walking and looking. We did find Brandy her coat in Ferragamo’s that she has been wanting but decided that 3,100 Euro was enough to just leave it where it was, and tell her it’s there and she will then know where to go to get it!!

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Ferragamo’s Home Office

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It was getting to be late afternoon so we decided to head back to the hotel for a siesta. Tony packed a box from here to ship home of stuff we have accumulated and things we don’t need. Brandy, when this box gets there from Florence from UPS, don’t open it. It should be there in two weeks.

The below pictures are of what we saw just walking around Florence. We sure are having a great time having Dad with us. He is loving all the things he is seeing and the differences in cultures.

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They are just now starting to decorate for Christmas, and we took a picture of a window dressing.

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This is a picture we have in our house now but couldn’t resist taking another from Ponte Vecchio Bridge.

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When we got back to the hotel after sending off the package Dad came to our room for a drink before we headed off for dinner. We didn’t have any idea where we were going and just wandered around for a while a few blocks away. Along the way we came up on a little produce market that had fresh beans, cabbage, radicchio, grapes, and lots of other stuff.  It was so pretty and looked so appetizing.

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We came up on a restaurant that we almost passed by because the store front was so small, but when we went in it felt so homey and smelled so good. First the owner brought by a plate with mortedella (bologna) and goat cheese on the house! We ordered a bottle of house red wine and had bruchetta then we all ordered the bean and pasta soup, man o man was it good! Dad ordered OsoBucco (veal shank) in tomato sauce. Tony had meatballs, there were three huge meatballs on his plate, and I had pork. After dinner Tony and Dad shared a strawberry flan that both said was wonderful. Dad and Tony agreed that was the best meal we have had so far. It was simple but very delicious!

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Just outside was a small cumquat tree.

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On the way back to the hotel we walked by some street artist that had used chalk to paint the Mona Lisa, and other famous works right on the street that will be gone tomorrow when the street sweeper comes by. Dad dropped a few coins in their basket as they really were good. We just had a terrific day today. It started off rainy but turned out to be cool and sunny. We just had the best time walking around looking at all this history.

See you in Rome…

Tony, Candy & Gene