Day 47 - Santo Spirito, Porta Romana
Mondays are super chill in Florence. Most of the must-see museums and sights are closed. The shops are shut. I spend most of my day peering through a variety of iron bars at unspeakably cool things; sleek Italian wedding dresses, canisters shaped like an old crone's head, cross-sections of windows, hefty cuts of meats, and reproductions of antique guns.
In the Piazza Santo Spirito, there's a half-hearted market. We spend a bit of time at the bronze and metal stall, imagining bringing home a grand old door knocker. The guy lets us know he cast the door knockers himself and says it comes with a screw. We pretend for a moment we're going to cart it home. Instead, I hiss, "Take a picture" to Rob. That'll do. Another store sells cashmere sweaters for 25 euro. Vintage fur coats are hung up on the side of a van. I contemplate a satchel with teddy bears on it but Rob makes me put it back. "You'll look crazy," he says. Crazy good?
Near the Pitti Palace, we eat slices of pizza for 3 euro each and wash it down with red wine at Toto Atto II. The pizza is a bit lukewarm but what are you gonna do?
We walk and walk and walk. Away from the crowds around the Ponte Vecchio, past the shut-tight back entrance into the Boboli Gardens, down the silent, shuttered streets of Florence. We emerge out at the fringes of town, around the Porta Romana, an ancient gate into the historic part of the city.
To the left of the gates, there's a park in front of an art school and it's all autumn-y and stuff. There's some bums hanging out on the park bench but also some legit art students. There's big signs on the doors telling people in English and Italian that it is a school and they are not allowed inside unless they have permission. These pesky tourists, aye? Sticking their noses in where they don't belong. We ignore the signs and go in as far as possible, taking pictures of the giant statute in the foyer.
The town is sleepy and we are too. We retire to our super comfy apartment. Rob cooks up a delish dinner. It's a relief to be in control of our food again.