Greve and Firenze (Florence)

We met Ago, Jon, and Boory at 8:15am.
Ago drove us (Ago, GG, Boori, Jon, Nicole, and Marc) to Firenze. There was a tense moment as our car and another had a near collision on a blind curve.
We missed our exit on the autostrada and Boory was advocating trying to make a U-turn by the toll station – this looked super dangerous to me and luckily we decided not to do it. Instead we went on and were able to find our way.


In Firenze, we stopped briefly by the Roman door while looking for parking but we ended up parking at Piazzale Michelangelo and taking a few pictures.

Then we walked down to the Ponte Vecchio. GG wanted to wait on a 3 hour line for the Uffizi. Nicole and I had no interest really and were meeting Nicole’s parents at 12 for lunch, hopefully at Il Latini. Jon will try to call my cell phone at 3pm or the disaster plan is that we will meet by the car at Piazzale Michelangelo.
A zany leather salesman was giving Nicole the hard sell on a 140E purse.
We met Nicole’s parents at 11:30am at the Duomo. They told us about their Italian emergency room experience. Nicole’s mom had a small toe infection.


Long, awesome lunch at Il Latini.

  • Pate
  • ricey thing
  • prosciutto e melone
  • penne bolognese
  • ravioli
  • ribollita (Tuscan vegetable and bread soup)
  • stracotto (Italian pot roast, beef in tomato sauce>
  • bistecca fiorentina (gigantic Florentine steak)
  • biscotti
  • panna cotta (literally, “cooked cream”, a custard) with chocolate & strawberry
  • Chianti
  • Vin Santo
  • Muscato – very refreshing
  • We declined limoncello & coffee

The total for 4 was 140 euro plus I left a 30 euro tip because we got so much free alcohol.

Finished at around 2:50


3:03 pm 103-0387 cool fountain on Via Maggio on other side of Arno (D’Oltrarno).
3:20 pm Stopped for water @ Caffe Storico Bianchi near Palazzo Piti.
3:28 Palazzo Pitti
3:43 pm sitting outside ceramic store.

Santa Croce

4:08 pm Nicole and I left Nicole’s parents at Santa Croce. We skipped it since it costs 4 E per person and we already went there on our last trip. We went to leather stores instead. Will meet them between 4:45 & 5.
4:27 pm Jon called to say they were just getting out of the Uffizi. Boori apparently needs to shop for a tux! (he’s in the wedding party along with Andy’s brother). Disaster plan revised to meeting on the Duomo side of the Ponte Vecchio at 6:30.
4:40 pm Nicole and I chilling out in the shade on the steps of Santa Croce.
5:02 pm Nicole’s parents met us outside of Santa Croce. I sent a quick email to my parents.


5:35 pm We had gelato @ Vivoli near Santa Croce.
6:15 pm Farmacia – bought bandaids & insect repellant

Meeting up with the rest of the gang

While walking over to the Ponte Vecchio, we spotted the gang at a restaurant as they were just paying their bill.
We went to a bookstore with an internet point for GG. Then a long walk back up to Piazzale Michalangelo, with a few dead-ends and lots of steps. We were quite sweaty and exhausted. We stopped for bottled water when we got to the top.

Ride back to Greve

The ride back to Greve wasn’t bad. Jon navigated and there were no major mistakes. Boory kept us entertained with question and proverb games.
9:00 pm Got back to our room at Vignamaggio and decided to take showers.
We hung around the pool for a bit before going to bed.

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