Monday, June 18, 2012

A Walking Day - June 17th

I took a long walk this morning (two hours - about six and a half miles) around Florence. I brought three pairs of shoes with me (to Italy - two pairs with me on the walk) and I wore my five fingers for the first hour and then switched to my gladiators because my heels hurt (go figure - I bought the five fingers to run in which would put me up on my toes and never on my heels). Home again after the walk I had tiny blisters from the gladiators on my ankles where one of the straps cut across (didn't get a chance to wear them much before bringing them here) and one large quarter sized blister on my left heel from the five fingers. So I switched to my sturdy hemp flats after that. That was a good idea.

Before I forget - it would seem that Florence is a city that never sleeps. Or they at least never sleep on our street. All night long I head music, laughter, loud voices, and speedy speedy cars and mopeds zipping by in the night. All night. I went to bed around 10:30 perhaps and woke up periodically until I got up at 6:00. It was never quiet. So, I'm resolved to work with my ear plugs tonight, although I'm not certain how that will work with my alarm clock...

Lunch! We went to this cute little shop and had the most delicious lunch/food we've had yet in Italy. It was a little buffet of delicious foods. Pastas, salads, bread, pita, rice, meat, soups, fruit. Normal things, but with interesting twists to everything to make it all wonderful.

Groceries! It was hard not to fill our bags with chocolate and snacks....oh, European chocolate, how I love you. But we did get some more regular groceries and we'll be heading to the market tomorrow morning to get some fresh produce. :)

The noise is back again (early evening). Our landlord explained that there was this big event going on, a huge soccer (football) game of 27 players vs 27 players in a sandy arena they created just a few blocks away. I can hear a band, or at least some drums, playing, and the roaring of the crowd is amazing. It sounds like the crowd cheering on the gladiators might have sounded at the Colosseum. They're chanting, singing, shouting, and there is nothing artificial about it except the occasional booming of a speaker from a mic. It really is pretty amazing.

I've been reading more about the game here. It doesn't really resemble modern day soccer much. Anyway, it might help you to get a feel for what it is. I recall now that our Landlord said that in the game there were essentially no rules of play or behavior. Fun.

We went over to see how the games were going as it turned out to be open to the public. We made it just in time for a few more points to be made and then for something of a half time or end game show with all of these Italians in the most fabulous costumes.

I should also mention that we were going to walk and find our school but discovered that it was about four doors down. In the picture on the right, the building on the right is our school. We're the second balcony to the left. I'm not sure how we did it, but we managed to pick the school and apartment without realizing how close they were to each other.

Following that we wandered across the river for awhile, got some gelato (finally) and proceeded to continue to wander and window shop. It was wonderful.

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