Overland 1972 - Day 16


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February 27th 1972
Published: March 1st 2013
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Day 16 - Sunday 27th February

Breakfast at the hostel was 150 Lira for rolls, jam and coffee. This is only the second time that I have stayed in the same place for a second day and so at last some proper time for sightseeing. So here goes. Unfortunately it rained nearly all day.

Medici Chapel - with its four sculptures by Michelangelo of the four times of day. Medici Riccardi Palace - with its frescoes of the three kings. Baptistry of San Giovanni - with its three gates of paradise and biblical scenes in gold. The Cathedral - with its beautiful frontage and tower but we did not go in because there was a service taking place. Palazzo Vecchio (old palace) -closed at noon ! Uffigi Gallery - ceilings just so beautiful : Michaelangelo, Boticelli and many others. Ponte Vecchio - the famous bridge over the River Arno with its shops and houses. Pitti Palace - built in 1548 and later bought by the Medici family. Biboli Gardens - with its Egyptian obelisk and ampitheatre. Belvedere Fort - with its excellent view across the city. Church of St Croce (holy cross) - the resting place of Michelangelo, Galileo and Dante any many others. Exhausting day and a long series of walks all in the rain. No question though that Florence is a fantastic place with its impressive artistic value.

Time for a meal but alas we chose a cafe with fairly unappealing group of occupants and an Italian only menu. Splashed out on spaghetti bolognese, chicken, potatoes, bread and wine for 1200 lira. Walked to station to check a few train fares for future destinations such as Rome and Ancona - we had intended to go from Pescara to Split but the route offerred no winter schedule. The fares confirmed that we needed to hitch - lucky young Americans with their railcards (still hitching is fun and you meet a wider range of people if you are lucky). A football special arrives with hoardes of banner waving fans from Bologna - time to head back to the hostel on the tram. I have finished my first film which is hardly surprising with the beauty of Pisa and Florence - this is sent home for processing by post but sadly the developed photographs never arrive. Postcard home, a coffee and off to bed - not looking forward to hitching tomorrow but its part of the deal (not enough money).

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