Friday, September 02, 2011

Tuscany & Florence

Our trip to Italy and France started out pretty well. All 6 of us got to Florence on schedule. Sachiko's luggage was lost for 2 days but we all lent her a few things and her suitcase came in today.

Wed night we just went out to dinner and had some wine. Then Thur AM, Penny & Sachiko got up early and took a 12 hour tour of the Cinque Terre. What a beautiful tour they had, hiking part of it and taking a boat back.

Meanwhile Mary, Mom, Virg & I had a quick breakfast and walked across the Ponte Vecchio, up to the Piazza dela Signora and then to the Dumo. After looking around the Dumo for a bit we walked up to the Medici Chapels and checked them out. Then we went back to our apartment for lunch.

Mom decided the jet lag was still hanging on and she had a nap, but Mary, Virg and I walked over to Santa Croce and toured there for a couple of hours. A lot of the restoration that was going on in 2006 is done, but the whole front of the Nave is still under restoration. Guess I'll need to come back in 5 or 6 years to see how it comes out.

Then we walked back to the Dumo to see the inside of the Baptistery. I really love the mosaic'd ceiling in there.
Today we got up and had coffee, then met Luca (Hills & Roads) at 9:30 am. He took us out of town and toured around several small towns with medieval roots. We did a very nice wine tasting at Sant Appiane. Their wines were great and they were very nice people. They do rent rooms so a trip to stay in one of their apartments for a week would be great fun.

Then we went to lunch at San Leo. Patrice was great. All the food she served us comes from her 'farm'. She produces her own olive oil and honey, has a huge garden, and raises pigs. She also rents apartments. So many choices and so little time...argh!

Anyway, tomorrow we're off to a market and then to the Pitti Palace after lunch. It's been very hot, tomorrow should be 97 which is a bit much for this mostly Alaska group. But we're having a great time and I'll post some more pictures in a few days.

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