Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Travel Tuesday: Florence, Italy

Ever since I heard about Helene's Travel Tuesday link up, I wanted to participate.
I read other people's stories about the places they have been, just so I can live vicariously through them.

I love to travel.
 Just for the weekend or out of the country, I don't care, just get me outta here!

Luckily my mom has the same travel bug that I do, and as a kid I got to travel quite a bit. My junior year (2004) and senior year (2005) in high school my mom and I, and several others, traveled to Italy for spring break. It was that first trip, my junior year, that I fell in love with Florence, Italy.

Fast forward to 2007, and a crazy study abroad opportunity, and there I was landing in Italy again. But, this time with Garrett!

As much as I am making this sound like the perfect trip, it wasn't. 
At first.

When we arrived at baggage claim I was giddy with excitement. We stood at baggage claim for several minutes after the last person had grabbed their bag from the conveyor belt, and my excitement turned into fear.

My bags were lost.

I called my mom from a really complicated pay phone in the airport and cried about my bags being lost and about the lady at the baggage claim desk not understanding anything I was saying. I think it was around 3am in Texas where my mom was, bless her heart!

The funny thing was, during our flight, I kept telling Garrett that I just knew my bags were lost! And I'm not one of those people that says that on every single flight, it was the first time I had had that feeling.

About a week later, and a trip back to the airport, I had my bags. Once hot pink and brand new, they were now covered in black marks and could no longer stand up on their own. Atleast I had my clothes!

Garrett was a much better trooper than I was, one of his bags got lost too but he didn't throw quite the fit that I did. I think it was because it wasn't his main bag and he still had some clothes to wear. Or it was because he handles stressful situations better than me. Either way.

I don't have great pictures to share with you guys. 2007 was before I had a nice camera or a phone that was capable of taking decent pictures. But I'll share the one's that I can find!

G and Ponte Vecchio bridge, which was built in 1345! 
Little did I know I'd be marrying this guy in 3 years! Ok, maybe I kinda knew : )

 Ponte Vecchio is my favorite place in Florence. It offers a great view of the Arno river as well as shops full of beautiful, and expensive, jewelry. At night there are street performers, mainly musicians, that make it a romantic spot.

See that green grass on the left side of the picture? That was where I dreamed of having my wedding. It's a little event location right on the Arno river. Needless to say, it was pretty much impossible to afford or book. This is looking from the Ponte Vecchio bridge.

Basilica of Santa Croce. Right down the road from our apartment!

We found a restaurant called Alfredo's that we ate at several times. We always asked for the same waiter, and he always gave us free Limoncello!

We also ate at our apartment quite a bit. Standa, a grocery store, had such great fresh breads and meats and cheeses. Ahhh we loved that place! We usually cooked pasta at the apartment and had a candle lit dinner.

While there, we were both enrolled in classes. I took ceramics and cooking classes, Garrett took a film class and a Renaissance architecture class.

I loved the ceramics class but, surprisingly, not the cooking class. I think it was because we had to cook in groups and the people in my group were idiots. I'm not just saying that, I got a C in that class because they said our risotto was done before it was. Idiots. And it was around a 30 minute walk every day to get to the cooking school. If I'm going to be walking 30 minutes worth every day, I want to go exploring!

Yes, I do realize how lucky I was to be able to take a cooking class in Italy. It just wasn't my favorite.

And sadly, that's all of the pictures I could find from this trip to Florence. I know I have some back in Texas in photo albums, I wish I had them on this computer or good 'ol Facebook, but I don't.

I wish like hell I could go back there sometime soon, now that I am older and more appreciative of the age of things and the art available. Especially now that I have a nice camera. Oh the hours I would spend just taking pictures!

Italy gives me a feeling of peace and happiness that I have never felt in America. I know that sounds stupid and weird, but it's true. I miss it. A ton.

Linking up with Helene!


  1. That is my biggest fear! I always think I'm going to lose a bag when I travel. It hasn't happened (knock on wood!)

    Besides that it looks like the experience of a lifetime! I wish to go to Italy someday!

    The pictures you did share are great! You and Garrett are adorable together!

    I can only imagine the amount of pictures you'll take when you go again!

  2. I too studied abroad and went with my husband who was then my boyfriend. and his bag was taken by someone else at the airport when we landed. I think he might have cried about it. he got his bag back. it is hard to cope with travel snafus when you are jetlagged!

  3. Have I mentioned since you briefly talked about Italy in another post how jealous I am?! I would LOVE to go one day. And don't worry, I would have been just as upset about lost luggage as you were. If not more!

  4. My family vacations mostly consisted of cross country drives to Michigan or 8 hours north to visit the other side of the family. Cooking classes in Italy! Even I would love that. One of my biggest fear is having my baggage lost. So cool that it was at least found. I recognize many of those same sites from my trip. I know you are dying to go back...and even though it was only last year so am I!

  5. You are making me crave an overseas vacation!!!!!

    I went to Paris and London. And have been dying to return.
    And like you, this was before even owning a digital camera, so I have prints everywhere and they are not the greatest quality... Plus scanning? Yuck!
    I may have to do a few though.
    I was there at Christmas time and one of my favorite photos is the naked tree branches in front of the Eiffel Tower. (I think I may need to blow it up one day)

    I've never had the urge to go to Italy but the more and more I see this and hear about your trip, I'm *yearning*...

    1. Post about Paris and London! I would love to hear about it! And I know what you mean, I actually don't even know how to scan pictures and add them. That picture you are talking about sounds gorgeous!

  6. i am DYING to go to italy, especially florence. my sisters just got back from there and they loved it and said Florence was their favorite! so sorry about your bags though! that would make me so mad!

  7. if i lost my bags, i would throw a tantrum and cry and scream and punch things! lol. i loved the photos...it's always so much fun to look back! i bet it was awesome having a grocery store filled with the best breads and cheeses and being able to just go back to your apartment and eat them whenever you please! what a beautiful trip!!
    i hope you're having a wonderful day! xoxox

  8. My jealousy is overflowing right now! I want to go to Italy so badly! I think I just need to tell my hubby that we need to move to Italy for a few months. We don't need him to finish school and we definitely don't need our jobs. ;-)

  9. how awesome are you! I wish for once, I'd have a chance to leave the country. I've got my passport ready to go (for the next 9 years..)

  10. I loooooove these pictures! Makes me miss Italy :( we have pictures from some of the exact same spots...so crazy! I'm jealous that y'all studied abroad there...seems like the opportunity of a lifetime. And I remember you telling me about your luggage getting lots, but I didn't know you "called it" on the plane..that's wild! You have a sixth sense! My luggage got lost coming home from Peru and it suuuucked :( worst feeling ever. Dumb airlines!

    What is limoncello? Ice cream? Sounds yummy!

    1. Limoncello is gross! Well I thought it was, G liked it. It's a lemon flavored alcohol but it is STRONG! I would always say thank you and act like I was going to drink it and then give it to G when our waiter left lol. I think Italian's drink it quite a bit after meals, atleast that's what our waiter told us! And I didn't know your luggage got lost after Peru!

  11. Hello from France!
    After visiting your blog, I invite you to join us in the "International Directory Blogspot".
    "International Directory Blogspot" It's 170 Countries and 10400 Websites !
    Missing yours join us
    If you join us and follow our blog, you will have many more visitors.
    It's very simple, you just have to follow our blog, enter your Country and your blog url in a comment, and you will be automatically integrate into the Country list.
    We are fortunate to be on the Blogspot platform that offers the opportunity to speak to the world and to share different passions, fashion, paintings, art works, photos, poems.
    So you will be able to find in different countries other people with passions similar to your ones.
    I think this community could also interest you.
    We ask you to follow the blog "Directory" because it will give you twice as many possibilities of visits to your blog!
    Thank you for your understanding.
    Please follow our blog, it will be very appreciate.
    I wish you a great day, with the hope that you will follow our blog "Directory".
    After your approval to join us, you will receive your badge
    We ask that you follow our blog and place a badge of your choice on your blog, in order to introduce the "directory" to your friends.
    I follow your blog, I hope it will please you
    To find out more about us, click on the link below:
    On the right side you will find green tint, the Country, you click it and you will find a list of blogs,
    perhaps your friends and also your own. We only ask you to follow our blog

  12. how cool that you got to go! and that you got to go together! i would not be a trooper about losing my bags! :)

  13. that is such an awesome story.

    i'm a new follower.

  14. Hey its Chris Brown from Italy, for more cheap italy tickets from euroafricatravel...