Madrid – Florence
Urgh. Interrupted night sleep. Interrupted at 4am when this guy that was staying in our room (the first boy in our room – eep!) would twitch his foot in his sleep and that would knock and clank the bunk beds. Very annoying. We ate some complimentary muffins that the hostel provided. They were mini muffins and they tasted like Kristen Stewart’s acting – bland and monotonous. We arrived early to the airport (no rushing and dashing this time). It’s a really groovy airport. When we were checking in our bags we asked the guy if we could take them on as carry-on to which he replied “Aren’t they too big?” “We’ve done it before”
Yeah he really didn’t care about his job – which suited us! Though being able to take our wheelie bags on the plane really annoyed the guy in line behind us. He had this hate of Miranda’s bag and she was trying to get on the plane whilst the flight attendant was arguing with him (in Spanish) we assume about Miranda’s bag being too big and he was having a cry about it. Jealous. The flight was delayed by an hour which was lame but it was very smooth and I didn’t get too freaked out as we watched Star Trek on Miranda’s ipod touch. The movie and the guy farting next to us took my mind off the scary flight. Fare well Spain!
We wangled our bags out of the overhead locker with the help of some strapping Spanish/Italian man. Off the plane and through customs – or so we thought. Miranda accidently left her passport on the plane! Eep! No one was panicking but us though as this must happen a lot and the flight attendants getting off the plane found it and gave it back. The man giving it to Miranda leant it wanting a thank you kiss but Miranda feigned innocence laughed – then we ran. Jolly good! By the way we went through all that to get the passport back and they didn’t even look at them when we went through the ‘customs’. I love Europe.
After asking tourist information we found a cheap bus that took us right to the city centre. Very handy. As we were walking to our hostel I got my first taste of Italian men. We were walking along... he was on his vespa (yes vespa) when I noticed that his doodle was just hanging out of his shorts! Nice. Must say I was a little taken aback. But the show must go on... hopefully with less male anatomy though...The hostel was a convent that had been converted. I use the term converted very loosely as it still looked like a convent giving the scarcity of the furnishings throughout the building. Our room is four beds and there were two other girls in there – one America and one Australian! How about that! Miranda and I are getting pretty sick of doing the whole “I’m from America she’s from Australia. No we didn’t meet travelling but on exchange in London”. We should have just worn signs around our necks.
Anyway – hello Italy! I’m back again to see what you’ve got this time. Last time I was in Italy I went to Venice – it was pretty cool but I want MORE! We started with seeing Il Duomo which is like the church of all churches and is decorated all along the outside! Coloured green marble and stone decorate the church so it’s really quite amazing from all angles. We climbed the bell tower and 419 extremely steep and never ending steps later we made it to the top. I love how you can tell the difference in places by the landscapes and the foliage. Different types of trees. It sounds weird but it really interests me. That and I like trees, okay? Excellent view – excellent breeze.
Bit peckish by this time so we surveyed the Duomo one last time only to see Miranda’s bag hater! That same guy... freaky! Off to find some delicious Italian pizza! One the way a very cute waiter boy said “Ciao” to us – FINALLY – a cute one! Amazing pizza – every bit as good as everyone makes it out to be. Followed by waffles and you’ve got yourself a winning meal.
We decided to do what we do best and shop. We went to the Piazza Signoria which has the fake David. It’s just a replica and we will see the real one eventually. Next stop was the Piazza Pitti which is on the top ten things to do in Florence – no idea why. It’s just a big plain square with a building in the background. Maybe inside is the good part but outside were just these giant lips.
Last stop for the day was the Ponti Vecchio which is a lovely bridge that just has jewellery shops all over it. It was once the butcher bridge but one of the royal people decided to kick them out and get in jewellers as they pay higher rent. This photo on the bridge took eons to get as this one woman just took her sweet time getting her boyfriend to take her picture. She knew we were waiting and took longer. Her boyfriend realised and was trying to hurry her along but she wasn’t budging. Which leads to me to my learning segment.
What I Learned About the Italians
You’re always wrong. And in their way. If they are taking up the whole sidewalk and you want to get by - you have to go around them. Unbelievable. Really started to annoy me after a while and I just wanted to shove their stubborn asses.
I also learned that to cross the road in Italy. You make a mad sudden dash preferably with your arms flailing about the place – most effective.
If you ask someone something in English they will respond in Italian. When you make it clear you don’t speak Italian – they speak Italian louder at you thinking that this will somehow translate the words.
Overall, a good day. Tiring but rewarding. Tomorrow holds more – everything!
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