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Published: June 22nd 2017
These keep buildings from falling in on each other.
Geo: 43.7687, 11.2569
Today it was 33.
We went on 3 tours.
The first one was 3 hours.
The second two were 3 hours.
We ate 3 meals.
We walked 33 miles.
A 12 oz can of Coke in Europe 33 cL.
Threes aside, we dodged a tour group with our planned breakfast time only to find the place wiped out of coffee, dishes, etc. thanks to a Rick Steves' organized tour. We prefer to be disorganized. Within a few minutes, though, we had the place to ourselves and breakfast items were refreshed.
We had a walking tour called "Original Florence" that began at 9:15 and ended at 12:30. Our favorite highlights of the three hour tour were:
1. Rich: I enjoyed the side streets which gave us a peak of what Florence looked like during the Medieval years. Some of the buildings had supports that were holding them apart so they wouldn't fall into the street. It was really something in a good way.
2. Barb: I liked the Strozzi palace, which was built according to perspective. To make an impression of grandeur, the lower level stones were rounded out and, as the building gained height, they got narrower to increase perceived height. The interior courtyard was designed along a perfect
3. Jeannette: I liked learning about Filippo Brunelleschi's dome, about which I've been reading.
4. Jake: I liked the wool guild building and the guild's belief that life could be better for everyone. Union yes!
Our second tour took us to the Uffizi Gallery. It was designed to house the offices of government by Cosimo Medici in an attempt to legitimize the family's power and influence over Florence.
1. Rich: As odd as it may seem, as impressed as I was by the changing perspective of Renaissance painting, I was most impressed by the view of the secret Medici passage from their workplace to their home. I read about this recently in Dan Brown's book, The Inferno.
2. Barb: I liked Filippe Philippi and his painting of Madonna and child with the angels that was really his own family.
3. Jeannette: I liked Filippe Philippi, the renaissance monk Cassanova who impregnated an 18 year old nun in his 50s and inserted his creepy little face into one his works. (Jake adds, his creepy little other thing. Rich adds, "I bet he also drank beer."😉
4. Jake: I liked our guide, who showed us how Renaissance artists, instead of signing their works, often inserted themselves as
Our final tour (magic #3) took us to the Accademia, where we were able to see the evolving art of Michelangelo. He believed he was setting individuals free from their marble prisons, and what a liberator he was. This tour culminated with the original David, removed from the elements in the 1870s, but still in amazing condition for having stood outdoors for around 400 years. With all of the pollution in the air, he probably would not have fared as well from 1870s to present. NB: Those of us, who had cameras, abided by the rules at the Accademia
and did not take pictures of David, even though we wanted to. Many
other visitors were not bound by the rules. Sigh.
1. Rich: David
2. Barb: David
3. Jeannette: David
4. Jake: David
Darn, that was four. He was a sight worthy of changing our number.
Tonight we enjoyed a dinner of chicken, gnocchi, pork, and pizza at Lo Spuntino. We picked the place partly thanks to their advertisement of Free Wi-Fi, which has brought you the updates and pictures from the last three days.
Tomorrow we are headed for a day trip to Lucca and Pisa.
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