Day 5: Getting Prosciutto Sweats

When I woke up today, I looked outside and saw the brightest of blue skies. So of course, I woke up Kerrianne to tell her this. What we have learned in Florence is that the weather patterns change constantly. Not like rain is coming or anything dramatic like that, but it could be amazingly sunny and then suddenly cloudy.

Despite all of this, as I sit in bed writing I have that amazing sun-kissed feeling on my face. I love that feeling. You don't get that feeling when you are working in an office all day. (Btw, that's the first time I've thought about work once). I can't believe I get to experience the last couple days about 4 times more... and all in Italy. I feel like the luckiest person.

If I had to summarize today, I would say: prosciutto. We started the day at the hotel breakfast that really does all other breakfasts to shame - primarily because I could eat as much prosciutto as my heart desired. Plus, there were amazing cafe lattes. The granola was a little too "banana-y" for my taste but you win some you lose some. After my second helping of prosciutto, I said to Kerrianne "I might actually get the meat sweats from this". Her response: "one can dream". Yes my dear, that would be the dream.

Here's how today went.

Santa Croce
I think when people flock to Florence, they immediately run to the Duomo, the David, etc. But they aren't running (at least in an obvious way) to Santa Croce because it was not crowded. In looking back on the day, this was one of my favorite places we have visited.

The church is gorgeous with its gigantic ceilings, frescos, and all that comes with that. Plus, it wasn't very expensive to get into either. I'm a bit tired but I think it was only like 3 or 6 Euros. Also not in a creepy way, but the floor is covered/filled with tombs to different people. Some of them appear to be cool enough to get roped off so people won't step on them ... it's like a tourist obstacle course.

Duomo & Baptistry
I'm not sure how things get their names here - but the Duomo is actually in the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore. Having just seen the Santa Cruce church... I was unimpressed with this church in general. Santa Cruce just had a much warmer and lighter feeling to it. The columns in Santa Maria del Fiore were just so heavy. BUT, then you get closer to the Duomo and you see how amazing it all is.
The coolest part about the Dome is that they designed it before they even knew how to build it. They just knew that someone would figure it out. So, when you stand right underneath it... you are just far more impressed. Ten points to Filippo Brunelleschi.

Mercato Central
My friend Jackie suggested that I go to the Mercato about a week before I left. I've been to markets before and was completely on board... however it is only open until 2 pm so that put a bit of a wrench in getting there. Thankfully we blew off the Uffizi due to crowds so we had plenty of time to gawk at meat. Sounds about right for ladies like us.
We ended up getting two sandwiches from this one stand that were amazing. We got the guy to cut them in half and then we sat in a park, in the sun, and ate more prosciutto. I can't even keep track of how much cured meat I've eaten in one day.

Wine & Wine
After the Mercato we wandered over to check of this museum, Hospital de los Inocentes, that Kerrianne had written down. Apparently it was some sort of example of unique architecture. Well, spoiler alert... it was closed for renovations but they'd let you see the Courtyard for a Euro. I thought Kerrianne wanted to see it, she didn't want to tell me no. We laid down two euro... and it was a waste. Save your money for gelato folks.
Subsequent to this disappointment, we decided it was time to sit and drink some wine. So we did... at one outdoor bar (Bar Sara) and then another (O.k. Bar). We moved to sit in the sun and it was worth it. 
Guys, I'm getting really good at drinking wine and prosecco in the middle of the day. I'm also really excelling at eating pizza.

So, the thing about Florence is that museums are like really popular. Specifically the Uffizi and the Academia - like call in advance style. Of course we didn't do this, but we managed to have this amazing woman at our hotel that got us reservations at both hotels for the one full day we were in Florence. Well, the Uffizi is bananas and we got totally overwhelmed with the longest lines I've ever seen. I'll never look at a women's bathroom line with a frowny face again. So we skipped the Uffizi. It was sunny and we didn't want to figure out the lines and we wanted to drink wine outside.

But the Academia we did go to. Thanks to our 3:45 reservation we were able to do the wine outside thing twice ... which greatly helped to alleviate the annoyance of the waiting in line. Since despite our 3:45 reservation we waited in line for like 45 minutes. The woman in front of us was literally losing her shit and the people behind us were not pleased either. So instead Kerrianne started to make jokes about how David wasn't going to be wearing any underpants when we got there.

Good Gelato v Great Gelato
We asked our hotel for a gelato recommendation this evening and our new best friend her Guilia tossed out 3 options to us. The BEST ONE in the ENTIRE city was near Santa Cruce and a good one was near Pontevecchio bridge.

Thanks to tracking our days on my Jawbone Up, we knew that we had tromped 6.8 miles and didn't have much more in us. Thus, we went with the "Good" option at a place called Venchi and were quite satisfied. Between the two of us we had 5 different flavors ... and I'm not going to pretend to remember them all.

Tomorrow? We wake up bright and early and head back to the train station.... for Cinque Terre. It'll be just about a few hour train ride before we are checking out the ocean, cliffs, and making taking a boat ride or two. I could not be more excited.

P.s. we also went to Santa Maria de la Novela plaza today & the Farmacia that is associated with it. They weren't amazing but if you are in the area, you should take a trip to the Farmacia. It is pretty cool, especially if you are into herbal remedies and old stuff. Chances are, you probably like one of those things.

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