Monday, October 29, 2007

how the other half lived

Yesterday we took in the Boboli Gardens, part of the Pitti Palace. When the inhabitants (Medici et al.) became bored strolling through the hundreds of rooms in the palace they could step out into their own private gardens, landscaped with fountains, pools, miles of pathways, and beautiful statuary. The Boboli is the largest single green space in Florence. And it was green and fresh and cool, especially after the rain in the past few days. The trees, mainly sycamores, are turning rust and gold. Against the clear blue sky it was a gorgeous sight. It seems to be a favorite Sunday strolling spot for Italians as well as tourists. It's a pricey treat: 9€ entrance fee, 18€ for two or about $27 US. The euro gets more expensive every day.

The resident cartographer plotted a route into the gardens that somehow (!) missed the easy entrance. So we climbed 45 steep stairs then walked up a hill of about 45°, past some huge estates until we came to the very top gate into the gardens. The rest of the visit was all downhill, thank God. There are some sweeping views of the city, including the Duomo from up at the top tier. You can look down on the various terraces and ponds to the back side of the palace. The idea of this being held in private hands for centuries boggles.

Today was to be a visit to the Bargello Museum, open on Monday from 8:15 - 1:30, but for some reason I did not sleep last night and the Patient kept the apartment dark and quiet until about 10:30 to let me make up for the lost night. Instead of the museum we wandered through this neighborhood and found a good mini-mart so we don't have to go to the Standa, about 2 miles away on the other side of the river. Found another bakery, visited the greengrocers for more beautiful veggies.

After lunch we will go over to the train and bus stations to check out the schedules. It's going to be a restaurant dinner tonight but where has not been decided. I was opting for lunch out since it is so beautiful and the three eateries around the piazza all have outdoor seating. But the patient has discovered Knoor cream of porcini mushroom soup and cannot be persuaded to eat otherwise. In fact, the "kitchen" in this apartment is such that we really can't cook anything else. It has two small burners, a tiny fridge and a microwave that holds one cup. A plate won't fit in it. And if we were to cook anything like fish or meat it would stink up the whole place. So we are confined to soup, boiled eggs, boiled pasta. The more I think about it the more I resent having to pay the equivalent of $1400 for this place. So I try not to think about it.


At 10:38 AM, Blogger mary ann said...

Oh, I am so loving your trip. I know everything is soooooo expensive, but so worth it, and that's why you two worked so hard for so long. I think I love the nabe walks the best! And the food, of course. Great description of the Boboli Gardens too...


Post a Comment

<< Home