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After our morning in Pisa, we hopped back in the tiny rental car and drove the hour and a half to Florence. We parked the car and dropped off our friend at Florence’s biggest train station, Stazione di Santa Maria Novella. After a quick break at (and I am ashamed to admit it) McDonald’s, Marco and I left S. at his train and started our exploration of Florence. On our way to the Duomo, Florence’s famous black-and-white cathedral, we passed through the almost equally famous leather market, San Lorenzo market. For shopping tips, check out this website.  I love purses! And I love scarves! And you’ll find those and so much more on this outdoor market. I was very proud of myself that all I bought was a limegreen scarf 🙂 Whenever I wear it I think of our beautiful afternoon in Florence 🙂 After a few streets of leather and more leather, we turned a corner and stood in front of the amazing cathedral, the Duomo… and then I started laughing! You see, I’ve been in Florence before. I must have been about 12 or 13. And all I remember from that trip is going from store to store and looking for a leather jacket. And when I saw the Duomo in August 2008, I couldn’t believe how I could forget a view like that. It is amazing! I guess my teenage brain had a very selective memory and didn’t care about cathedrals 🙂 This time around, Marco and I walked all around, went inside, and I really enjoyed it. But… here is a warning for the women amongst you: make sure your chest is covered. I wore a regular shirt and they wanted to give me one of their scarves to cover up. Luckily I brought my own! Same thing happened in the Vatican Museum by the way. And the mean thing is… I saw girls inside showing much more and not being forced to cover up… The difference? They had no boobs! Oh well…

great shopping in Firenze at San Lorenzo's market

the beautiful cathedral of Florence: il Duomo

il Duomo from the side

After all the sightseeing, we decided it was time for lunch and started our search for pizza. We stopped at a restaurant right by the Duomo, sat down, and ordered pizza… and you’ll never believe what happened… the waiter said that their pizza was not fresh (they would only heat up frozen pizza) and directed us around the corner to an actual pizzeria. How nice is that?! So, we followed his directions and ended up on the other side of the Duomo at Le Botteghe di Donatello where we had delicious pizza fresh from their wood-burning oven.

fresh pizza right by "il Duomo" at the Botteghe di Donatello

Next stop: more of Firenze. Check out Tuscany August 2008 for all post from this trip.

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