Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Day in Florence

You may be wondering what the glamorous life of Sallie Drumheller is like, now that I'm Italian.  The good news is that it's gotten no less weird and random.  The bad news is that Europe is really hot.

When people sweat in Italy, it smells like wine because that's all they drink here.
Today I went to a palace with a butt-ton of art in Florence, then I tried to go to a church, then a museum, then I gave up and went to H&M and dropped paper (so you see I'm really get a full cultural experience).  But my day was hardly normal.  Let me tell you about some of the things I witnessed.

After a couple hours of playing Princess Sallie in the palace I stumbled upon a farmer's market in a square near our school.  It was awesome possum because it was very local and Italian, a rare feat in the tourist trap that Florence seems to be at times...oh, except for the Ke$ha blasting through the historic piazza.  I don't know what it is about that girl and Italians, but Tik Tok, it's always Ke$ha o'clock over here whether you're in the grocery store at the bar.

Then I headed toward the train station.  I've been trying to see these frescoes in a church near there all weekend but something is always wrong; on Friday they didn't have change for a fiddy which was all I had, they always close the 596th Saturday of each century, and Sunday there was apparently a reenactment of a Napoleonic battle.  Suddenly I turned around and about 100 men dressed in 16th century military garb had taken over the piazza and were wheeling around fake cannons.  Shame on me for not sticking around to watch.

They look so happy for soldiers heading into battle...

After that, I sauntered around a little more because I was in a new part of Florence and enjoy getting lost as a young, alone American girl.  Before I knew it I was waiting with a crowd in front of some swanky looking hotel.  I don't know what they were doing there but I assumed waiting for some celebrity.  Anyway, I decided to dip out because I realized all my companions were very Italian and I probably wouldn't have recognized the celebrity in any case.  Also, did I mention it's freaking hot here?

Wrapping up my tour de Firenze I decided to check out the famous leather market.  I know, I've been here 6 weeks and I haven't been yet, but that's because I knew it would be a downward spiral.  You know how Abercrombie pumps their cologne through the air conditioning system?  I think the leather market does this too, because it smelled of wonderful skinned cow (I'm not big into animal rights).  I walked around there for a solid half an hour, warming up my bargaining skills and scoping out what I will eventually buy.  After all, this is going to be my one big Italian purchase and I need to train for it.

As I was leaving I passed by a group of real Southern jovial black ladies.  Now I love this situation in the States, so you can only imagine witnessing it in Italy.  They had surrounded an Italian man and were interrogating him about how to pronounce Florence in Italian (Firenze).  He looked terrified, and they just kept saying "Fray-unz?!" at top volume.

All in all, it was a great day.

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