|The cool picture above was taken by my talented photographer friend, Sasha Stylinksi. I believe she captured my true essence here! For more of her work, visit: legsflorentine.com|
Ah, Florence (actually called Firenze in Italy) is one special city, one that hasn't been altered much over time. It's easy to stroll through the streets and envision Michelangelo roaming around there, finding great inspiration out of a city that is no doubt a creative powerhouse. This is a dreamy place, especially when seen from above.
But I will say Florence is not my favorite Italian city. Rome still takes the cake, and there's a good reason why. The Florentines are a colder bunch of people--distant and distracted in their demeanor. However, I don't blame them. Whilst Florence looks peaceful and perfect from above, below its small frame can barely hold the amount of tourists crowding every crevice. There seemed to be more tourists than Italians, and thus, I heard English everywhere.
Being that I am obsessed with coffee, I have learned how to order a cappuccino in Italian, which I did at a local cafe. Next to me comes strolling up an Australian who orders straight away in English without a flinch. I ask her (thinking I can teach her something), "Oh, are you visiting Florence for the weekend?"
She answers,"No, I've been here for three weeks. I'm studying here."
UGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHH. ^ MY PET PEEVE! English speakers of the world! If you are living in a country (or even visiting), you owe the country you are visiting respect by at least TRYING to speak their language.
No wonder the Florentines are annoyed. I would be too. Of course, for all my complaints about too much tourism, I was myself a tourist there and can't say much. Florence is a city that has a love/hate relationship with tourism: it's overrun by it, but it needs it to survive.
And could I ever tell you to skip Florence? Hell no. She's too damn beautiful to skip. And so the tourism cycle continues. But what we can learn to do is respect a culture and their language when we are being tourists. We are responsible for that.
That's enough of my rant, though. ONTO PICTURES! Because seriously, I was enamored by that dome!
And I was especially enamored by this dude. LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT:
Look at the incredible detail:
Lest I forget to show you the food (this IS Italy, after all):
When you see the above sign in a restaurant, it means it's a historical eatery/bakery in Florence. The business has been making their goods for many centuries and is passed down through the generations.
For all of her faults, Florence is still loveable. She's just a complicated girl. I can relate to that.