E2: Twinsies on a roadtrip to Florence

Two souls alike, a combined dream and an executed plan had brought us to Italy this summer, where we fried our skins in the sun, drowned our worries in the crashing waves and ate our weight in pasta and pizza like it was suppose to be. When we weren’t busy getting tanner than the locals or stuffing ourselves with the best food, we relaxed on our front deck read to each other, went on our daily walk and watched the sunset like every old couple in the books. On some days that was all we did, but on other days we were more adventurous. On our last full day in Italy for example, we cruised to the beautiful city of Florence, where we got lost, almost died of a heat stroke and paid a fortune for two ice creams. Didn’t stop us from having the fun though!

July 22nd, our morning began like every other. The sun peaking through the leaves, gently kissing our cheeks as she said her good mornings and birds chirping in the trees as we drowsingly rolled ourselves tighter into our blankets. Oh how fortunate we were to be waking up to such a beautiful scene on such a gorgeous day. A yawn here and a stretch there, we rolled over from either side of the tent facing each other, our eyes still small “Are you ready for Florence!”, we smiled at the adventure ahead of us “Let’s get this show on the road!”.

Not even an hour later, 2 hours to go on google maps, us chanting to old childhood songs we still knew by heart, we were heading for Florence. About an hour away, we ended up getting stuck in some really bad traffic. Spontaneously, we decided to leave the high way cruise to Florence via the normal road. This very quickly turned out to be the best decision we could have made as we were cruising past vineyards, through the cutest little towns and over so many hills we lost count. At one point we drove through a beautiful alley, the trees so tall the houses behind them were barley visible anymore. The houses on this curvy road were big and fancy, the gardens well looked after. Turn after turn they became bigger and then after another turn suddenly my eyes had caught a glimbs of something “FLORENCE!!! LOOOOOK LOOKLOOKLOOK!!”, my poor cousin focused at the wheel almost had a heart attack. It turned out we came from behind the city and perfectly drove past the city’s view point with the big Michaelangelo statue.

Florence

We parked our car and couldn’t stop gushing over how amazing the view was! We were more ready than ever for our little excursion now, hopped back into the car and headed for the city. In the city things looked a little less calm though, all the one way streets and confusing signs caused us to get lost a bit. They do drive a little different in Italian cities than in Switzerland. Eventually we made it to the smallest little parking spot, that happened to have one more spot free in the shade. We hoped out of our little car only to be hit in the face with such a heat, our little tank tops and shorts, suddenly seemed like too much clothing. Car locked, sun glass on, we were not going to let that stop us from having a good time. First stop food.

We had actually left on an empty stomach and it being close to 12 o’clock, we were starving. Our goal find a little shop where we couldn’t hear the English language. Kind of hard in the heart of Florence but eventually we did find a cute little restaurant, which we thought to be more authentic. In the end I think they gave us the tourist card anyway. Oh well, it had been worth a try. Ordered and shared between the two of we had some amazing pasta and an appetiser I don’t remember what it was, but not really worth mentioning. The best thing though was of course dessert! I couldn’t leave Italy without having had my favourite desert now could I, so Tiramisu it was 🙂 Amazing! Although I would’ve loved for the portion to be a little bigger, but I suppose they can’t just give me the entire dish, that would’ve been a bit selfish towards the other guests 😛 Lunch was great, until the bill came. We nervously chuckled it off as this was Florence, who were we to complain.

Next stop exploring! Florence isn’t actually as big as I thought I would be. In a good hour we had walked past most major sights and although we did not go into most of them, as the cues were just too long EVERYWHERE, we very much enjoyed the cities beautiful old architecture and many little shops here and there that had little nig nags. I think it must’ve been quite funny walking around with us, as one of us admired the beautiful wooden doors on the old building as-well as the carriages and horse walking all around and the other one, stumbled over her feet over and over again as she was gushing about how cool the balconies looked. The cathedral, of course, was mind blowingly beautiful and sooo much bigger than I had expected it to be. So was the cue that went all around the entire cathedral. It is safe to say, we did not wait in 40C weather in the sun for who knows how many hours. Instead, we ended up in an Italian gourmet shop. Now that was an adventure on its own. They had pasta in all colours of the rainbow, so diverse they could have been mistaken for candy and don’t even get me started on all the sauces, olives, cheeses, wines and and and.

At this point we had been walking around for a good few hours already and the heat was killing us. There was only one solution to this problem – Ice cream! We walked up to the first store we saw, there not being a single price sign, we just ordered two ice creams not thinking of anything – I mean it’s ice cream, how expensive can it be, right? – yeah…we should’ve asked for the price first, hehe. We did not have a lot of money left at the end of this day. Especially after the last bit of shopping we had done to “escape the heat”. Do we regret any of it though? Nope.

Then it was time to head back and cook ourselves a nice dinner, bring it to the beach and watch the sunset and hope for the green flash like every other night. Well after another four hours and 18 round-about that was. We had decided to skip the highway altogether and although that had been a great idea, we did underestimate a little how many hills and round-about we would have to pass. Yeah that is right, I counted we drove past 18 round-about. You Italians sure like your round-about 😛 But 18 of those and two very exhausted and slightly dizzy souls later, we did not end up cooking anything anymore, but opted for pizza at the beach instead alongside a nice glass of wine. Not a bad compensation if you ask me.

Unfortunately I have to report that we did not see the green flash, but that doesn’t matter because we had a pretty darn good day. We should have done more of them, but we just love the beach too much for that. I am curious where the next adventure will take us.