After yet another bad night sleep in Venice, I was ready to turn in our hotel key, the one that was not only attached to a lovely giant tassel but also was inscribed with the hotel name and room number. Very secure.
I have to say that the hotel somewhat ruined Venice for me. We stayed at the Westin for three nights and each night at about 2am, very loud banging would occur and it sounded like someone was moving furniture on the floor above us, even though we were on the top floor. Since the hotel was undergoing a much-needed renovation, I attributed the noise to renovation work. That was until Sunday morning, the day of our departure, when I figured out the source of the noise.
At about 7am, I was lying awake, listening to the banging noise. The room was lit with sunshine. Then, suddenly, the room went pitch black followed by a loud bang. It was at that point that I realized the noise we had been hearing at night was caused by the external shutters on the windows. They were flying open and slamming shut as the wind blew in from the sea. If only the front desk would have warned us of this and recommended that we shut and tie the shutters prior to going to bed. If only…
I dragged myself out of bed and Peter and I checked out of the hotel and boarded our train to Florence. We were seated next to two American teachers (husband and wife) who were on their 10-year anniversary trip – “10 years, 10 days in Italy” as they called it.
I do not recall how we started talking to them but I’m pretty sure it was when I helped the wife teacher open the bathroom door on the train. In her defense, it was a fancy door, sort of. After we got back to our seats, Peter and I learned that the husband is from Minnesota and the wife is from Wisconsin. I believe that this was their first trip to Europe because they described how bedazzled they were with how expensive it was and how small everything was and how the toilets sucked and blah, blah, blah.
The wife went on to state that it was strange to see so many US companies selling stuff in Italy. Here’s a short list:
- Puma (actually German)
- H&M (actually Swedish)
- Adidas (also German)
We arrived in Florence on Easter Sunday, checked in to our hotel, and walked (almost ran) to Gusta Pizza. I’ve actually had dreams about the pizza since our visit because it was that good.
After devouring our individual pizzas and a bottle of wine, we quickly walked to a wine bar that I had picked out and thought it would remind us of our favorite wine bar in San Antonio, Zinc.
We then proceeded to drink enough wine to power a jumbo jet. We arrived at Pitti Gola E Cantina at about 5pm and left at 11:30pm. During our time at Pitti Gola E Cantina, we met the three owners, drank more wine than anyone should ever drink in a day, didn’t eat, and met a couple from New York. We chatted with the New York couple and then the four of us walked back to our hotels (located across the street from one another). We exchanged numbers, made dinner plans for the following day, and said our goodbyes.
From what I can remember, Easter was a lot of fun. All Easters should be like that one!