Travel

Travel Notes – Tuscany 02, Italy

As I walked on, I marvelled at this city’s beauty with its brown and yellow dominant buildings. The streets were uneven and incredibly narrow. Cars whizzed by and on every corner you could find gelato cafes and pizzerias. Florence was packed with tourists at this time of year, with summer holidays beginning everywhere. There were quite a number of bicycles, too, and people were dressed in tanktops, summer dresses, and shorts. The one thing about Tuscany that I find most amazing is how you always seem to find surprises at the end of its streets. One good example is the breathtaking view that was to greet me at the end of the street you see below.

Firenze 16.jpg

Firenze 17.jpg

Firenze 18.jpg

It was already noon by the time I got here. I wasn’t expecting anything extraordinary and in fact my feet were already beginning to hurt again. I’ve never done so much walking in my entire life and thank god I brought my comfortable Puma walking shoes with me! Anyway, where were we? Oh yes, the street in the picture above. The narrowness of the streets made the surroundings shady but it also gave that dark suffocating feeling to it, too. I could see the light was brighter as I neared the end but nothing prepared me for the view that I was about to find. Suddenly, I was staring at the stretch of the River Arno. The sight completely took my breath away. I stood there for a good five minutes and acted like a child who had just found a chocolate tin at the back of a cupboard! On my left was this wonderful view of the Tuscan hills with its famous cypress trees spread out like mushrooms on a patch of green, while on my right I saw the famous street-bridge, Ponte Vecchio.

Firenze 19.jpg

Firenze 20.jpg

Firenze 21.jpg

Alongside the Arno were multi-story buildings that looked like flats, the colours mostly either brownish orange or bright yellow. I walked on and suddenly heard the chimes of a church bell coming from a building on my left. I remember stopping for a while to enjoy the music-like toll and I could feel my forehead wet with sweat. The sun was staring down at me and as I glanced to my right, I could see the Uffizi Museum across the river.

Firenze 22.jpg

Firenze 23.jpg

Firenze 24.jpg

When I arrived at Ponte Vecchio, the place was packed with people so I decided to walk on after taking pictures of some stone steps that led to a typical Firenze neighbourhood. My tummy began to rumble and I knew I had to find a place to eat soon. As I mentioned before, Florence is packed with cafés and restaurants with outside tables shaded with pale yellow parasols, but I wanted to find a place that was a bit quiet, away from the hustle bustle of the tourist frenzy. Thank god such a place existed and it was here at Bordino that I had my first lunch in Tuscany. I settled for a pasta dish that came with a basket of bread and I quenched my thirst with a bottle of cool mineral water.

Firenze 25.jpg

Firenze 26.jpg

Firenze 27.jpg

Firenze 28.jpg

Firenze 29.jpg

Firenze 30.jpg

The Bordino is situated on a quiet street that went upward if you continued to walk past it and after finishing my pasta and a little serving of tiramisu, I continued my journey. I didn’t know where I was going. I didn’t carry a map with me and just followed where my feet took me. I could never get lost here, I thought. How could I? I was a total stranger in this town and I can’t claim to be lost in a town that I’m not even familiar with, can I? So up and up I walked and once again I was enchanted by the architecture of this town. I was now exploring the neighbourhood and the cobblestone path I was on seem to go further up towards god-knows-where.

Firenze 31.jpg

Firenze 32.jpg

Firenze 33.jpg

Houses seem to be two or three stories high with no gardens or fences prior to the entry. But then again, who needs gardens if you’ve got beautiful scenic hills just outside your window?! The doors stand on the roadside and if I was naughty enough, I could literally knock on someone’s door as I passed by. For some reason, the Firenzes seem to love painting their houses yellow and the shutters green, for every five houses I come across, two or three of them seem to have yellow walls with green shutters.

Firenze 34.jpg Firenze 35.jpg Firenze 36.jpg

7 thoughts on “Travel Notes – Tuscany 02, Italy”

  1. lo harusnya kirim tulisan lo ke majalah a+ deh :D
    tiap bulan kan ada rubrik jalan2 ;)

    eh, itu toko buku shakespeare and company, mmmm yang jadi setting before sunset/sunrise ya ???? kerennyaaaaa….

  2. I was dreamin to indulge my self in those beautiful places you mentioned in your europe getaway stories, but for now, I’m gladly enjoying your experiences as if I was the one who travelled there..sigh…daydreaming, but who knows :).
    How’s your precious bunda? ( abang n dede..hugs for them ).

  3. I find most amazing is how you always seem to find surprises at the end of its streets.
    +++
    That’s exactly what a by-product of millenia-long culture refined over and over again does: it just awes a visitor. lol
    +++

    was a total stranger in this town and I can’t claim to be lost
    +++

    Which reminds me of the first time I stepped into Paris (sans Hilton!) felt like my existence being reborn into the smallest molecule. Life actually meant something.

    +++
    the Firenzes seem to love painting their houses yellow and the shutters green.
    +++
    Fiorentino = man
    Fiorentina = woman
    Fiorentini = people of Florence

    —————–
    Its still a big hush hush but I’ll soon be a stroll away from Florence. La bella Firenze, la città del rinascimento!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *