Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Last hours in Italy

Exhausted and feeling vulnerable after the theft we barely remember entering the magnificent city of Florence. We had been in such a rush to leave the city a mere week before, Italy awaited, so returning to its embrace was met with relief and confusion. The city made no sense to us but we knew one thing for certain, we needed a hotel near the airport for the early morning flight. It took quite a bit of doing but we found Hotel Franchi of which the only redeeming feature was that it was close to the airport. But we were to discover not close enough to the areas of interest in Florence. We left he car in the parking lot and after more misdirections than we could believe finally boarded the last bus going into the center of Florence. What had we been thinking when we left the car behind? Too exhausted to sort out the city, that's what we had been thinking. I was certain that my feet couldn't manage one more step, but after giving up the walking shoes for sandals I was able to persevere enough to completely enjoy the balmy evening. The daylight remained just long enough for me to photograph some of the Cathedral, baptistery door, building, windows, signs, and statues. Some how we stumbled into the Piazza della Signoria where copies of Michelangelo's David reside. The Piazza was the perfect setting for dinner at Cavallino where we sat next to two couples from England. The waiter decided that we should all become friends being that we spoke the same language. It couldn't have been a more delightful last meal in Italy.

Ponte Vecchio is best seen in daylight but when that isn't possible its best to enjoy the experience no matter what the conditions are. So, these are a couple of the night shots including a manipulated one at the bottom.

We had been told by the waiter that a taxi stand was near Ponte Vecchico and when we tired of listening to street musicians we were dismayed to discover that wasn't true. Okay, enough walking! Roger went into a hotel and asked the desk clerk if he could phone for a taxi. Within minutes one picked us up and 25 minutes later we were back in the hotel with the worst AC in the world. None of the cool air nosily leaving the decrepit machine reached us. The night was short though and the flight from Florence to Frankfurt was quick as was the 2 hour wait for the 13 hour flight back to Los Angeles where we were met by my son-in-law, thus ending the adventure to Italy. Is Germany next? We had German beer, German Franks, and German potato salad in the airport terminal in Frankfurt; Roger is now reading Rick Steves' book on Germany.

I can just hear the sighs of relief that I've finally posted the last of the trip.

Quote: The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't. ~Henry Ward Beecher

When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

1 comment:

Julie said...

Not sighs of relief at all, it's been a lovely journey. We should have gone to Florence this year but the (coach) trip was cancelled. Maybe next year.