Ciao Mounties! After visiting Tuscany and Venice, this week felt slow and peaceful. The weather in Florence was warm and sunny, making the days feel truly like spring. This week I had the opportunity to visit Palazzo Vecchio, attend a cooking class, and go out to dinner with a great friend.
Palazzo Vecchio is a place that I have walked past numerous times, but I did not have the opportunity to look inside until this week. This museum holds beautiful artwork, sculptures, and magnificent ceilings. When you first step inside, you are drawn to the beautiful open space with archways containing gold designs and colorful paintings. As we continued on with the tour, we were led into a huge room with an intricate gold ceiling where Michelangelo and Leonardo Di Vinci created masterpieces. Paintings adorned the walls and sculptures were placed around the room for visitors to admire.
What interested me most was not a painting that could be found on the walls, but one that could lie beneath it. Giorgio Vasari was hired to do a painting for the Palazzo Vecchio and in his painting are the words ‘Cerca Trova’ meaning ‘seek and you shall find.’ It is believed that Leonardo’s painting is behind the wall, but it is not known for sure. On the rest of the tour, I saw a gorgeous chapel, covered in colorful paintings, a room with each wall decorated with the elements, and rooms with the most spectacular views. This museum was truly amazing!
During our cooking class, I made the most well-known Italian delicacies, pizza and gelato, and as an added bonus, sorbet. My classmates and I carefully followed the instructions to make the perfect sorbet and gelato for dessert later on. With pizza, I had room to improvise, as we each got our own dough to roll out and shape however we wanted to. I then added fresh sauce and mozzarella before it was placed in an oven. My friends and I sat down at our table and chatted as we eagerly waited for pizza masterpieces to be brought out. The cooks then passed around huge plates of pizza sliced up for everyone to enjoy. The pizza was amazing and was worth the wait. After dinner came our gelato and sorbet, which melted on your tongue. I dread to think of the day when I can no longer walk down the street for this delicious treat.
During the weekend, I took the time to enjoy the beautiful weather and walked around Florence with a caffe latte in hand. It was relaxing and refreshing to walk in the busy streets of Italy like I had lived here all my life, and it made me think back to my first week when I would get lost walking to the Duomo. Even after spending two months here, I do not think I could ever get tired of walking the streets and gazing up at famous landmarks. That evening, my friend, Lyla, and I went out to dinner at a nearby restaurant. Under the canopy, we enjoyed delicious food and the warm evening air. Afterward, we decided to walk around the streets of Florence: We passed the Duomo, the Medici Palace, the market, cafes, just walking around and talking. It was a splendid night together!
Check back later this week to see what my classmates are up to in their adventures around Florence. I’ll be back next Monday with another update about my time here in Italy. For now, arrivederci!