Florence is experiencing a torrential downpour and the Florentines could not be more thrilled! I don’t know how it works in the rest of Italy or what, but the Florentines get their water supply from surface water and don’t have ground water wells. They rely so heavily on the rain because it happens so frequently here, but not recently. The city was thinking about turning off water rations at night to preserve because we were runnin’ out! Well, they got what they wanted. In my Italian class today, Leonardo was singing and dancing during the lightning storm. It’s safe to say they are stoked.
This picture is from last night. All the ladies and I went out for my friend Hailey’s 21st birthday party at Dante’s, a tratorria across the Arno River. For those of you who don’t know a tratorria is classic Florentine food and boy do they know how to make pasta here. The truffle sauces are my absolute addiction, I am honestly thinking of moving to France and cultivating them myself. They are so rare and expensive in other parts of the world, but here it is more just a regular sauce and let me tell you I will be getting as many truffles in me as possible in the next month. Everyone here is turning 21 and it is so interesting to watch people figure out what to do on their birthdays because the legal drinking age is 16 here so there is not too much excitement in going to bars for the first time.
Another crazy thing happened to me this week when I went on tours with my classes. Yesterday, I went back (for the fifth time) to see my main man David and my Renaissance Art teacher, who I was not totally fond of but is now growing on me, took us upstairs (which I didn’t even know existed). We went up there to find peace and quiet for presentations, but I also found an art conservation office! I originally wanted to go into art conservation, but upon learning how much schooling was entailed and the fact that one has to pass Chemistry with higher than a D+ (not my proudest moment), I removed that from my list of occupational interests. Anywayss, it almost made me want to try again! It looked incredible in there with all of the art under lights and tools everywhere. It actually looked like a complete mess and judging on how the Italians handle their art, I don’t know how impressed I would be with their skills.
That leads into my other story which happened today, in the Uffizi with my same teacher, who happens to also teach my Michelangelo, Caravaggio and Bernini class. This being my sixth time in the Uffizi, I am already aware of what a complete mess this place is. Unfortunately, gift shops and contemporary shoe displays take up the bottom floor so the beautiful masterpieces of Caravaggio, Botticelli’s Birth of Venus and endless upon endless amounts of Madonna and Child’s are squeezed together on the uppermost floor. We near the end of our class and my teacher tells us that he is taking us to the new permanent installation. No one in their right mind, unless you were a local, would ever have been able to find this place! He took us to the snack bar, which is on the third floor, we went through this door to walk down three flights of stairs into what is practically the basement. There were no signs indicating where this place was or what was in it. I walk in the room to find Rubens, Rembrandt, Velasquez! I mean there were some major masterpieces in this place, I could not believe my eyes. Not only were these works of art stuffed in the Uffizi’s basement, but the walls were blue. Everybody essentially expects galleries and museum’s walls to be off-white so it’s not distracting and now I see why. This terrible bright (and I’m talking bright!) It looks like they allowed the curator’s three-year old pick out this color.
Figured you would enjoy some anecdotes from my week, I hope that you are all well!