We just got home late last night, and today is me recoup. day before going back to work. The trip was amazing, but I'm so glad to be home to my furbabies! A short recap, for anyone interested:
Rome: ruins and ancient buildings were fantastic! Extra fantastic were all of the cats that have taken up residence in the ruins. There is even a cat rescue organization that cares for the cats in a certain set of ruins in the city. Best adventure was biking along the river's bike path! It was way too hot in Rome, though, and I was uncomfortable most of the time. Scored a cheetah-print calf-hair bag for 4 euro, plus a squirrel pendant for two euro at a flea market.
Florence: Florence got much better breezes, so I was much more appropriately dressed. Very picturesque, but it was a real trial to hit up our list of places to visit. Many shops/restaurants seemed to only open from 11:30-2:30, so we really didn't get to go anywhere that was suggested to us. We fell in love with a line of enamel-over-silver figurines by a maker called Saturno, and I scoured the city until I found a little tiger pendant for myself - we were told they have only made the pendants for two years, so I feel lucky to have found a feline.
Venice: I joked that it was simply impossible to find a good angle for pictures here - so so so gorgeous! And a hotbed of cat art! We bought some prints, a statue, and figurine. Converting Hubs into a fellow cat lover was one of my best moves ever, since this meant he was happy to pay for half of everything. :) We spoke with some lovely, friendly shop keepers here, who told us that the Venetian culture is almost completely gone, and that the city is almost completely a tourist attraction now. It was kind of sad to hear, but at least it still runs in a capacity that allowed us to take endless boat rides through the canals.
- The next time she travels, Ms. Sensitive Skin *really* must bring her own bed linens... -_-
- Can you believe I didn't buy a stitch of clothing on the trip? My Italian-made clothes are some of my favorites, but I just didn't fall in love with anything I happened to see. I guess I'm lucky, because everything was super expensive.
- I owe a HUGE thank you to those who pushed me to bring a couple of dresses with me. They were just about the only thing I could wear in Rome without being completely sweaty all the time.
- The Scottvest trench was too hot in Rome, but I wore it every day there anyway, because of the inner pockets. I even carried Hubs' passport and wallet in the coat, since the crowds were thick and the pickpockets notorious.
- There was plenty of awesome, cheap food everywhere! And I've gained five pounds, even with all the walking. Oy, but it was worth it.
- The Report booties and Doc Marcies were great shoes for the trip, but next time I need to buy a pair of insoles for *every day* of the trip. We walked from around 7:30 am to 9:00pm every night, and the poor insoles were completely flat by the end of it. My feet hurt plenty, but it was only from the weight of my body - none of the arch or ankle strain that plagued me in Japan. Also, of the two of us, I was the one to make it home without any blisters. :)
I've only gone through a fraction of our photographs so far, but here are a few good ones. Thanks again to everyone who helped with packing and itinerary ideas - I have not done much traveling, so I could not have been nearly as prepared and comfortable with out you guys!