Secondo Fina Settimana: Firenze

Updated: Jan 22, 2019

My second weekend in Perugia wasn't in Perugia, but in Firenze (Florence)! My two roommates, another friend, and I embarked on a weekend full of food, views, and art. This weekend marked a lot of firsts for me: my first train ride, my first trip with friends, my first time booking an Airbnb, and my first time in Firenze.

We departed for Firenze via train on Friday morning. We got to the train station early because we were thinking it would be similar to a plane: boarding happens an hour before you leave, you get settled, and then departs. We were wrong. The train showed up 5 minutes later than it was supposed to and stayed in the station for all of 5 minutes before taking off again. Luckily, we were early. The train took 2 and half hours--a half an hour longer than it was supposed to. We got off and walked to our Airbnb. We thought it was close to the train station, and cheaper than taking a taxi. We were wrong about that too. It was a 30 minutes walk, and we all collapsed onto the coach once we arrived. Our host was super sweet, and even left us a bottle of Tuscan Syrah as a welcome gift! We spent Friday afternoon walking around Firenze, stumbled upon the Duomo at Golden hour, ate gelato, and visited the leather market, where I got a cute little leather wallet. We watched Moana and had wine and cheese before dinner at Trattoria ZaZa. The night ended at a still to be determined gay bar, then back to our apartment. Step count: 27,160 steps, 10.6 miles.

Saturday was filled with the Uffizi Gallery, hiking up to Piazzale Michelangelo, and making new friends. We spent the morning walking around this huge gallery, admiring the art of the Ancient Romans and friends. I never thought my art history course would be helpful, but I recognized some the pieces and knew some random facts about the periods and styles in which they were done. Guess that hard class was helpful. Afterwards, we hiked up to the Piazzale Michelangelo where you can see all of Florence, which was also perfectly timed at Golden Hour. It was cold and my legs hurt but so worth it. Warning: the pictures don't do the view justice. We trekked back to our apartment afterwards, continued Moana with more wine and cheese, then went to dinner with my friend's former exchange student. She took us to a bar that had a buffet and good mojitos, then we ventured to a local pub. It was first time in a pub, and the hard cider was good. Throughout the evening, we struggled to speak Italian while our host struggled to speak English, but we still had a great time! We rolled back to the apartment around 2 AM, tired and needing to get off of our feet. Step count: 27,253 steps, 10.63 miles.

Our last day was spent visiting the Uffizi Palace, getting lost in the Giardini di Boboli, and traveling back to Perugia. The Uffizi Palace was full of really cool animal fashion, extravagant royal apartments, and good lattes. The gardens were huge, and we got pretty lost. You could spend days in there and not see everything, but we somehow made to the Island Fountain in one piece. We walked to Gusta Pizza for a final meal in Firenze and left our mark under the table. We learned how difficult it is to get a taxi in Italy, since you can't hail them like you can in New York. You have to use an app or call a phone number, pray someone speaks English, and hold on as the driver navigates pedestrians and narrow streets. We made to the train station, and this time our train was on time! Step count: 20, 468 steps, 7.99 miles.

I am happy to say I am writing this post from the safety of my Perugia apartment, with my feet up and not doing my homework. This weekend was busy, but so fun and unforgettable. Can't wait to go back for Spring break!

©2018 by Maia Harrell.

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