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3 months ...................................... adventure - explore - challenge

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Pretty Pitti!!!

Another slowish start to the day today. Well, we are on holiday, sort of!!! Sonja and I had the morning in Florence and so we decided to go to the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens attached. This required yet another march along the river Arno (now becoming a little tedious but well worth the effort).

The Rennaisance palace had belonged to the Medici family and several Dukes and was used as a power base by Napoleon. Every room was filled with ornate paintings, sculptures and furniture in rich colours with copious amounts of gold leaf. Brockade fabrics covered the walls and Italian marble in it's finest on the floor. White marble busts and sculptures filled every part of the palace and it's grounds and we tried had to imagine how these beautiful pieces of work started life as a lump of stone. Unfortunately no photos are allowed to be taken inside the palace, see google images for your viewing plesaure!!

Outside, the ornamental gardens steeply ascended up and away from the rear of the palace to either side. In the sunshine, we strolled around the grounds admiring the wonderful fountains, sculptures and landscapes.

At lunchtime we hopped back into the car and set off on a two hour drive south to our Helpx hosts, Margaret and Maurizzio, not far from the elevated town of Cortona. The winding mountain roads took us higher and higher and the views were spectacular. We finally found Cashmere Cortona farm down the steepest of slopes, testing our breaks and reversing skills to the max after making a slight wrong turn. The strange country smell turned out to be the burning clutch!!!!

We were welcomed by Margaret and her two sons Thom and Elliot and shown to our own appartment, home for the next three weeks. We'll tell you all about the farm tomorrow when we are put to work!!

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