Florence has been beautiful. You can see the Duomo from just about anywhere in the city so I started my day off by admiring the beautiful basilica. The detail on these churches is absolutely unbelievable. While I didn’t get to go inside the Duomo (I was saving the 10 Euro for the Uffizzi) I did get to go inside the Basilica Santa Maria Novella which was also breathtaking. Rather than waiting on the 3 hour line for the Uffizzi gallery, I bought a pass for a reservation and went right in for only 4 euro extra.
This turned out to be 4 euro well spent because while going inside the couple in front me asked me something and we got to talking for a little – just how we’re both from America and how Jim, the husband, had done about a year of backpacking of his own. I bumped into them a little while later in the gallery and they asked if they could take me out to lunch – that he knew what I was going through and that I was probably on a tight budget and when was traveling people took good care of him and they wanted to do the same for me. I swear I almost cried it was the sweetest thing ever. We went our separate ways for the rest of the museum which was very cool with a huge variety of art and lots of history and they met me outside about two hours later. We went to a little cafe nearby and talked for nearly two hours and exchanged email addresses. They’re we’re very interesting people and ill never forget their generosity.
After lunch, I went to go see the Ponte vecchio – the most famous bridge in Florence – and I hiked up the Piazzale Michaelangelo for a panoramic view of Florence which was just stunning. It’s such a beautiful city with huge churches, art on every corner and a pretty river cutting right through. After eating some gelato for dinner (sorry parents) I headed back to the hostel. I was happy to see that all 5 of my roommates were back and we decided to go out together later. Two were from London, two from Australia and one from New Zealand (getting my connections for next year woo). We ended up getting along SO WELL. We had an awesome time at a little bar we found and ended up staying out pretty late, bonding with each other, making friends with locals, taking silly pictures and of course got halal for late night drunk food. We were all sad to see each other go this morning but the British girls might come visit while I’m in sorrento!