Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Rain rain, go away! Florence

Another day of persistent rain.  I am getting tired of this!.  Fortunately, it is not snow, and we have good GorTex jackets and umbrellas.  This morning was a lazy day, drank tea and coffee in the apartment until 11:00.  Then off to the market for pasta and sauce for tonight.  Went to our adorable little old pasta lady and bought enough pasta (fettuccine) for "duo personnes".  Don't ask me how much that was, because I don't know, but it was exactly enough for us both and no leftovers.  Then sauce.  Looked like spaghetti sauce in the counter, so she dished it up.  Fabulous!  Fresh tomatoes, garlic, chopped olives, olive oil.  It probably was something to spread on a piece of bread, but we put it on the hot pasta with the Parmesan cheese and that was dinner.  $3.80.  Then bought a baguette and some Chianti Classico and one Melon.  Shopping finished.





Came back and unloaded, then off to a panini shop for a sandwich.  I had a slice of pizza, Jerry a sandwich.  It was cold, so I had on my shirt, fleece, and Gortex and leather gloves.

We started at the Medici Chapel, which couldn't be photographed.  The Medici were the ruling hot dogs around here, started out being doctors, but ended up being bankers and owning most of Florence, and bankrolling most of the great art.  The family took in Michelangelo as a 13 year old boy and helped him get his start, for instance, and while they were not particularly religious one of their sons became Pope Leo X.  Amazing stuff.  Michelangelo did the sculptures for the tombs.  Money was no object.

Then off to the Duomo (Cathedral).  This was the one that inspired the dome of St. Peter's.  4th largest church in the WORLD.  We saw the church, but then the museum which holds most of the treasures.

The Duomo - took 140 years to complete
Brunelleschi's Dome




tourists with umbrellas in front of the Babtistry

John babtizing Jesus


Look at the size of this latch!

Brunelleschi dome on the Duomo.  First dome built outside of Rome






Memorial candles.  I really liked these little trees to hold the candles.

Pillar in the Cathedral.  Early Renaissance and they didn't understand the 
engineering very well, so HUGE pillars.

The museum is housed in another building.  Brand new museum and very well done.  And...warm!

The doors to the Babtistry, designed by Pisano.  First 3D relief done.
Mid to early 14th century  These are the originals.  The ones on the Babtistry are copies



Michelangelo's 2nd Pieta done when he was 80 years old.  Nicodemus at the top
is really Michelangelo.  He designed this for his crypt,but they didn't put it there.



Donatello's Mary Magdalene carved from wood.

The teacher

Noah, who invented wine

silver and gold altar


tools used to construct the dome.  Remember, this is 14th century.

Simple machine unit!


Brunelleschi across the street from his dome

Still raining so we walk the few blocks to the apartment, but on the way took some pictures of the leather market stalls.
There are literally scores of these carts, all with hustling salesmen.



If you stop too long, as I did to take this picture, you have to
try something on.  I did, but did not buy.

Home for a short rest and an internet break for Jerry, then off to our wine bar for sandwiches and wine.  Met a couple that is from Ohio in town for the Parkinson Disease Conference and then also met a young student from New York studying business and Italian at the University.  Home again and just had our pasta.  In for the night, we are both tired.  Hopefully the weather will clear a little tomorrow.  It has got to be better than the 12 inches of snow you guys got!!!  Hi to all.  Keep in touch!  Ciao!






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