Florence Day 1

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.

Duomo 2

via Wikipedia

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.



34 responses to “Florence Day 1

  1. Judith, you are so brave and I envy you! What an adventure! Enjoy and stay safe. We keep planning a trip to Italy and then something more practical gets in the way…maybe next year with your inspiration!

    • I just thought if I didn’t do it now I never would. So took the leap and here I am. Don’t know whether I shall stay for the planned 3 months. But we shall see.

  2. You are so brave! I hope you have a wonderful experience, and I look forward to seeing/hearing all about it.

  3. Go you! I’m impressed with couples hit the road together . . . heading off into the unknown. But doing it as a single takes a rare courage.

    Enjoy every minute!

  4. I, for one, am DELIGHTED you have embarked on this solo adventure! Certainly a little nervousness and uncomfortableness will be encountered but, I expect you to return with experiences and stories that you will forever treasure.

    • Hi Debbie. I have missed you over the past couple of months. Trust all is well with your family. And yes, I shall no doubt get over the nervousness and know that I shall treasure my time here.

  5. Judith, you are the bravest woman I know! I can’t imagine doing this and I will lie vicariously through your posts. Please keep them coming!

  6. My big brave sister, clever you sorting the problems out. love xx

  7. Have a wonderful time, Judith – a big smile always helps when you don’t speak the language!

  8. In no time at all you’ll be just one of the locals, giving directions and help to the latest newcomers. Enjoy every minute of your adventure. 😀

  9. Sounds like a great adventure. Enjoy, Judith. Wishing you a wonderful time! 🙂

  10. What an adventure! You’re an inspiration, thank you!

    • Thanks Cindy. I am enjoying finding my way around without speaking any Italian apart from good morning, good evening, hello, go well etc. I am about to post Day 2.


  11. Well done! I could understand how you felt being in a strange place and not able to at least have a cuppa. I used to take an electric water heater thingy which I immersed in a mug of water to boil it for a cup of tea. I can tackle anything if I can have a cup of tea. You will feel so proud of yourself as time goes on . Just watch out for those Italian romeos 🙂 Joy

    • Hi Joy. It’s amazing the things that a cuppa solves. But now am OK as I bought a little plastic electric jug/kettle and can make tea as often as I like and just the way I like 🙂

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  13. Italy is on our list for so many reasons! We have an acquaintance who lives near Lake Como. Gerard is determined to see Naples so we will see how it all comes together.
    Enjoy and remember, as the French say, to breathe your nose!

    • Oh yes Joss. Italy is magical and my partner has a friend who lives at Lake Como. We might get there at the same time as you. Who knows. Stranger things have happened. Love reading about your wandering through France. Do keep us informed.

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  18. I’m following your adventure all over again as I prepare for one of my own… I’m not so brave as you though, I’m going with Hubby. 😊

    • It was an adventure and now i Ikeep thinking about it. Enjoy your. When are you going. Oh, did I mention the Bobolli Gardens? Put on your walking shoes for that one.

      • Thanks Judith, I’ll add the gardens to my list. I’ve got just a few weeks left to do my research and then you know me, I’ll bring back some pictures for you to think more happy thoughts. 😊

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