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Florence Day 6: Holy birthday

May 2, 2012

I was so lucky to feel completely spoiled as soon as I woke up on my birthday in Florence! Nadia made me the most beautiful yogurt parfait accompanied by a caffe macchiato, a sweet card, and the ubiquitous breakfast cookies…  I relished my breakfast as long as I could and then hopped on the bike to head into town.  First stop: the Americans in Florence exhibit at Palazzo Strozzi.  I snuck a pic, inspired by these rich colors, before being told politely that there was no photography allowed (this became a repeat mantra of the day, not that it stopped me ;))

I loved seeing all of the lovely portraits, landscapes, and photographs by the Americans exploring Florence in yesteryears, and to daydream about renting a villa in the hills of Fiesole with my artist friends to work during the summer…  How luxurious!

I passed an amazing sign, and then headed off to my first church of the day, Santa Croce.

I was in such awe to be surrounded by the tombs of the great thinkers of our day,


all of the frescoes and carvings and crests,

and the soft  colored auras shining down from the stained glass  windows…

I stopped into a little sandwich shop for lunch, asking (as I often do) for the shopkeep’s favorite meal.  I received a lovely salami sandwich with soft mozzarella and grilled zucchini which I ate across the street in the sun!

I continued along on the bike, stopping for a stroll through the little garden and church of Santa Maria Novella,

admiring the checkerboard ceiling beams

and the delicate metalwork (I have a pin on my jacket that looks just like this sweet bow).

After visiting the fabled pharmacy nearby (which was unfortunately undergoing renovations and not in its full glory…) to buy myself a little present of honey hair cream, I headed next to my favorite square to pop inside of Santo Spirito

where the intricately painted alter boxes caught my attention, particularly these haloed doves…

I had a quick caffe macchiato at Volume with the napping pups,

raced the sun back home,

and came home to the most beautiful birthday cake a girl could ask for!  Nadia and Matteo, thank you again!!

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