Travel

Day 13. Florence on a train

An early start again, we’re out the door at 8, 3 croissants from the kitchen, heading to the carpet for the first drive down to the train station. The Navigator has a real navigation job, my job is driver, Liz can comment from the back seat as long as she doesn’t criticise me. The Navigator had one job, one f….g job, and things don’t start well when she sends down a dry gully, however a quick three point turn with a truck up my arse causes a little bit of tension. Anyway, we’re back on track, then we’re off track then we’re back on and by some miracle we find a park in the train station car park, run to the platform where the others are waiting. L’agente has sent the train tickets just in case we miss it, thankfully we don’t.

Florence is a beautiful place with beautiful and interesting things to see. We’ve been here quite a few times and I love visiting here. My one job is to get the group to The Accedamia to see David, they have an 11am slot. A tip – if you haven’t seen David and you get the opportunity then make the effort, it’s a special piece of art.

The walk from Santa Maria Novella train station via the leather markets to the Accedamia takes no time and they are ready waiting for Elvis their guide in plenty of time.

The Navigator and I leave them and find a coffee and something to eat. Then a reconnaissance mission into the leather markets before heading to the Duomo where we catch up with some of the group. The sun is warming everything up but it’s pleasant in the shade, a pizza for lunch washed down with a beer before we head to the Arno River  via the sculptures in the Piazza, through the middle of the Uffuzi and over the Ponte Vechio.

Eventually we make our way back to the train station, work out how to buy train tickets, pay for a toilet break and find Binnario 16 where our train is waiting. It’s a double decker train, only a couple of stops to Cammucia. The sight of Cortona on the hill as we come into the station is pretty nice.

The little Renault fires up and I immediately I’m directed down another dry gully, when I recover my composure I see a lady in a wheelchair in a street where I think I have to go, mild panic and sweat breaks out, but we go one street further to recover, then a driver error ( unusual?) when I exit a roundabout too early and then have to recirculate back to the road up the hill to Cortona.

A few fellow travellers are in the Piazza sipping spritzers and wine in the cool late afternoon air.

Tonight we use the laundromat, €14 does the Reid and Murphy washing, we’re ready to go again.

A late dinner, then finally bed T about 11

Ciao from Cortona – Pauolo

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