I arrived in Florence last night after a very easy Air France flight from London City Airport. But the taxi stand has to be Florence’s best kept secret. However, I arrived at the apartment to be met by the owner’s mother who speaks not a word of English. Somehow we managed particularly when I told her I really had to use the bathroom and then she showed me around this tiny apartment. It is quite basic but does have a small patio area to use if this incessant rain ever stops.
We discovered we were both widows – she for 8 years and me for 15. Then we trotted around the corner to meet ‘mia amica’ her friend who speaks English. Unfortunately the friend is away for a few days so no joy. We then went on a rapid walk around the area – there supermercado, here bakers, not café, here the daily market, here the auto bus.And then she introduced to me Juliano and Lori (?) the next door neighbours, gave me a quick lesson on opening the front door of the apartment, gathered up her two chihuahuas and left. I decided to have an early night. She had left me some grapes, tomatoes that I gather she had grown herself and some bottled water. No electric jug and I didn’t fancy boiling water in a pot and then pouring it into the cup so made do with the water. By the way she showed me how to light the gas but the lighter failed to light – run out of gas so I couldn’t have boiled a pot anyway.
So I took myself off to bed and slept for about 10 hours. Didn’t know how tired I was.
This morning I set out for my first foray. Luckily Ornello (I think that was her name) had introduced me to the neighbours because I couldn’t get out of the building. There’s a complicated locking mechanism and so the wife showed me how to open the door. I was heading for the supermercado. I found it eventually, and am so pleased with myself – I bought coffee, ciabatta, butter, cheese and bananas. Said a few scusis and grazies on the way. Then across the road I espied another shop and here bought an electric jug and a lighter for the gas. So I think I am all set.
Had fun and games with the internet, but eventually it is up and running. So my Florence adventure is really starting.
It does seem strange to be in a country where I know no one and don’t speak the language. Rather daunting actually.
Tomorrow I am going to the Duomo – the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and I propose to take the autobus. But first I have to buy a ticket for the bus. Apparently these are sold in many shops so I have been practising saying “Autobus biglletto per favor.” Watch this space to see how I get on.
- Florence and Pisa (scenesfromanitaliansemester.wordpress.com)
- The Duomo (culturalclass.wordpress.com)
- I Found the Duomo (mymamacancookblog.wordpress.com)