Masterpieces and a Mastercard
Trip Start Aug 23, 2008
43Trip End Oct 10, 2008
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After a coffee stop in the Gallery we were then taken to see Brunelleschi's Duomo. which dominates the skyline of Florence. Our guide took us round the pink & white marble exterior of the Duomo and we learnt about the Baptistry with it's famous bronze doors. It was hard to get close enough to the doors to appreciate the detail but I eventually managed to worm my way through...
Our tour did not allow time at this point to go inside the Duomo as we were booked for the Galleria dell' Accademia at 11.15.
Having seen so many life-sized statues of David in Florence, we were not particularly excited about this opportunity to finally see the real thing, but as it was included as part of our tour we all went along anyway.
Once again we had to go through security and then wait our turn to enter. Inside the gallery, the first things we see are several unfinished marble works of Michelangelo. These were rather fascinating as it was possible to see how rough everything is to start with and just how much work is required to finally create such beautiful work in marble.
Then at last we get to see the 'real' David. It seems so much bigger than all the others and has an 'aura' about it that's hard to explain. Something about this statue is very special and we were all very glad we got to see it in the end.
The rest of the day we were free to do what we wanted, so time to get the credit card out and go shopping..........
The leather wares in Florence had been catching my eye for some time and I bought a leather bag and then succumbed to a tan leather jacket that was on sale. Gwen & Viv from our tour were also in the shop and they both ended up buying jackets as well.
Then on to Ponte Vecchio to look for a 21st present for Louise. The goldsmith shops on Ponte Vecchio are fascinating to look through but incredibly expensive! However, Florentine gold is supposed to be the best in the world so we walked the entire length of the bridge and back until we finally found something suitable....that we could afford!
That night we dined out in a little restaurant where they served Lomabata steak, a specialty of Florence which we'd heard about. The steak is a T-Bone at least 1 - 2 inches thick and the customer can direct the chef as to how thick they want it. It is then weighed and grilled in a charcoal fire. We watched other customers being served steaks that were bigger than the plate, with nothing else(!) and decided it wasn't for us, although Tony was starting to get tempted.
I had a lovely bean soup that had been recommended by Terry, our tour director, which was just what I felt like.
Sadly, this was our last night in Florence.....tomorrow we head to Venice!