“Prego, Madam! What do you want? Why do you knock on the door??? IT IS CLOSED!”
An angry Italian woman yelled at my sister as we peered through the only money exchange in site.
Rule number 1:
Italy takes naps…And don’t mess with them.
“Brooke, what are you looking at? That man over there???”
“Yes!” I answered.
Holy cow, ladies. Italy is like the land of red carpet. George Clooney has nothing on these cobble-stone walkers!
Needless to say, cameras come out—click, click, click!
Rule number two:
Be prepared for MANY Italian masterpieces—and not all of them are centuries old or made of marble.
“Brooke, is this the water taxi we take back?”
I look at the scrolling monitor, the platform, the time—and, being the European live-r, answer with confidence, “YES! It is. Run!”
We jump on the rocking water taxi in just enough time to be shoved, trampled, and smothered before the chain goes on and the boat pushes off…Our day in Venice is over, and all we have to do now is find the RIGHT bus off of the island and back to our hotel.
What should have been a 15 minute boat ride, however, later turned into a full-circle 1-hour water taxi ride where I REFUSED to ask for directions, because, you know, I KNOW how to live in Europe.
When we came to our original take-off platform, I swallowed my very big pride and asked the woman manning the boat if and when we would get off on our platform—
She chuckled, told us to jump off, and run to the next platform…
Where we then had no money nor tickets, ducked under the railing and hoped beyond measure that the next boat would take us home.
Well—relatively home since we still had a bus and walk in front of us.
It did—and we even ended the night with homemade spaghetti to boot.
Not bad for my ego, eh?
Rule number 3:
Don’t EVER go with Brooke when it comes to directions
I need to sanitize my entire body!
My sister-in-law proclaimed after our lively, full, smell-ful bus ride to the Leaning Tower of Pisa, where I—ONCE AGAIN—put us on the wrong public transportation. A one-hour tour around the extremely lovely city of Pisa with a girlfriend nearby manning the GPS saying, “Wait, we should be at the Leaning Tower in 7 minutes…” The bus proceeds to turn left…”No, wait…now 11 minutes!” The bus turns right “No, now 15 minutes…”
Yes. We took a loop bus around the city and didn’t see a scant drop of the Leaning Tower until we arrived BACK at the train station and decided to take a taxi from there.
Which took approximately 4 minutes to the Leaning Tower and only cost $12 Euro for 6 of us.
BUT…we did get to see the otherwise lovely city of PISA—trampled by bus-goers and smothered by no ventilation and holding on for dear, careening life as the bus driver drove like a cowboy.
Rule number 4:
Remember Rule #3!
Should we go see the original Masterpiece David or are we okay with the copy???? We all kind-of wondered…
But, HEY…In Florence, so close to a Michelangelo Masterpiece, we decided we better put on our walking shoes and try to make a way…
BEST DECISION EVER!
And, along the way, we got distracted by lovely shopping, open marketplaces, amazing architecture, and couple Dutch college kids that proceeded to point us in the WAY WRONG direction to the David. Thankfully, we asked a few other joggers for a second opinion…
Where we made it.
I was in awe.
From his feet to his piercing eyes—Michelangelo’s David was probably one of the most magnificent man-made creations I have ever seen. And I have lived in Europe a long time, have seen beautiful cathedrals and divine paintings. I have even dined next to original Monet’s …
Upon leaving the university which houses the David, I bought my parents an awesome Florence reconstructed book and what I thought was the most decent (not showing all body parts of David) bookmark…
Upon my sister returning home and giving my parents the gifts, her 11-year-old son flips the bookmark over where David is fully revealed and proclaims, “WELL! That is highly inappropriate!”
Gotta love kids!
Which brings me to my final rule of this #sisterchicksposting…
Rule number 5:
See the David…even in all his glory! It’s a must. From the gentle way that David is holding the stone in his right hand, to the way the sling is draped over his back…
From the way his feet lead to his legs and the muscles of youthful strength are perfectly carved …
To the way that his eyes are glancing to the left…
To know that a young 26-year-old man carved this masterpiece out of ONE piece of marble…centuries ago in the days when today’s technology did not exist.
SEE THE DAVID!
And, spend way more time in Florence than we did. It is worth every single drop of your time and days!
Well, we #sisterchicks finished our trip strong (the luggage at the cheap airport I’ll address another day)…
And we had a blast.
I can’t wait until these #sisterchicks abandon their husbands and children again where we will then head to ROME!
OR THE WORLD!
Because traveling with #sisterchicks is well worth every drop of time and energy.
Just remember to never follow my directions!