wk 18 – gelati, uffizi & wild boar

And so after a few days watching the rapidly depleted beach at Trevignano; it’s September, no self respecting Roman swims, sunbathes or is really seen in anything other than long trousers, summer is officially over on 1 September, we head back into Rome to meet up with Loz and Soph. We found them with a ‘cacaaa’ (our calling noise to use whenever we lost each other, am certain others around us decided quite quickly that we were certifiably mad) in the midst of bags, commuters, confused tourists and headed off down the platform to the furthest possible carriage, and onto the slow train to Florence.

The apartment we rented turned out to be perfect, great location, arctic aircon to counter the 3 floors of stairs, kitchen, two bathrooms, really lucky find. The Florence trip turned out to be a really sound idea, and we made the most of our few days, from galleries to churches to huge fiorentina steaks, and it was a grand ‘cacaaa’ to be back travelling round with S&L again.

The photo above made me consider getting into small boats in a huge way, this is the rowing club of Florence’s outdoor chill out area, could you get a better location, I knew there was a reason I tried getting into Oxford all those years ago?!! Soph and I spent a few hours sans boys walking around Florence and were really fortunate with the light and stillness leading to some of my favourite ever Florence shots below, and I admit a grand total of 2 ice-creams each. They were tiny little cups. Honest. The second was exquisito, raspberry in mine combined with chocolate fondant in Soph’s was one of those perfect combinations, sweet and sour is underated, it betters my previous quest; strawberry and lemon has been knocked off the top of the gelato gusto table. Top tip, the gelateria is the bridge after the ponte vecchio, a vision in pink, right in front of you on the way to the pitti palace, we “randomly” found it again the next day…!

I should add a mention here to Sophie, the inventor of the flying wombat, it’s added a whole new dimension to the the blog, and to wombat’s vertigo…

We ended up getting tickets to the Uffizi for the next morning, late that afternoon, a good tip if you aren’t sure what day you want to go, more flexible than the online thing as generally even with wi-fi there is rarely a printer option. We practically ran to get there for the 9-9.15am slot after a night involving mucho chianti, wild boar, and limoncello chasers back at the apartment, Boticelli, Leonardo and Titiano were all worth it as always…and the final touch was an exhibition on the history of the Uffizi itself, another successful combo of Medici/Vasari. I most enjoyed the small film clip showing the gallery featured in movies over the last few decades, including the ‘mud angels’ who helped to rescue works of art and literature back in the terrible floods of 1966, so there were football and mud angels that year then…and symbolic lions…(ok so my football trivia is coming out randomly and irrelevantly, can’t help liking the lightning seeds ‘three lions’ though, was a tad into world cup footie in the 90s!!!)

After another local meal involving equal amounts of chianti and boar once again, Loc and I pushed through and found a hidden local butcher with sausages that ‘you can eat raw they are so good’ for my dad on the way to a chapel, food/culture in equal measures = esssence of Italia…

A few more gratuitous shots of Florence below:

You can probably understand the all round hilarity when we found the flagship Locman store in Florence, I think it’s on the cusp of major international expansion, purely based on the model…

before heading back to a last night with S&L in Trevignano, miss them both already, can’t wait to hear that ‘cacaaa’ when we get to Boracay for Loc’s 40th next April!!!!!

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