First of all, I continue to struggle over where to visit this fall. Kim suggests I think about heading back to Umbria, which is oh, so tempting -- I loved the three weeks I spent there last June....I could take a week and stay somewhere I haven't seen before.
Zerlina suggested Rome, a great idea because it's so wonderful, with so much great art. However, since I spent two weeks there in January, I suppose I should wait a bit before I return (I'm already thinking NEXT winter, back in Rome!)
It's a happy dilemma, I must say!
Meanwhile, I read an interesting piece on the ANSA website today (an English translation from the Italian news agency) saying that today, Italy as marking "World Slow Day." Apparently, various cities were planning "a host of initiatives to remind people to ease off and savour the good things in life under the slogan: Slow Down to Live Better!."
This, I like. I find it far too easy to rush around frantically, and I tend to measure my days in terms of what I've accomplished. Yet, I think my nature is to actually be fairly pokey. I really love the Slow Travel philosophy of not rushing frantically.
In fact, in a dramatic contrast to the Slow Travel philosophy, I just have to display this question that I saw today on the Fodor's message board. (I don't enjoy Fodor's a great deal, but for some reason, the security filters at my office block the Slow Travel message board, yet allow me access to Fodor's. So sometimes, I drop in there for a mid-day travel fix!)
Anyway, I read with amazement, this person's question about whether this itinerary was possible. I won't include the poster's name here, to protect the guilty. But the rest is really true. Oh, and don't blame me for the remarkable spelling mistakes. The poster did have additional info about where he/she could book tickets, make reservations, etc. Perhaps the poster was very, very rushed......
"Date: 02/24/2008, 03:47 pm
"I am planning the second part of my 3-city trip to Italy. This is the Florence section. Can you help me- is this a good itinerary, do-able, and are we missing anything?
"Day 1- Train to Florence AM about 2 hours
"Duomo- cathedral, huge, good audio (free but dome and crypt moderate)
"Museum Duomo- cathedral workshop
"Accademia- Michalengelo’s David (15 minute walk, 1 hr to visit 14 Euro pp) (expensive)
"Piazza della Signoria- square outside of Accademia, outdoor market
"Campanile- Tower of Duomo (expensive)
"Palazo Mediccia Riccardi- Medici palace (moderately priced)
"Mercado Centrale- leather
"Medici Gallery- tombs, etc (expensive) (just ok)
"San Lorenzo- church and burial of Medicis (just ok)
"San Marco- convent (moderate) (just ok)
"Day 2- (maybe walking tour?)
"Bargello- courtyard (moderately priced)
"Ufizzi museum- just ok (10 minutes to walk, 2.5 hrs to visit 17 Euro pp) (expensive)
"Mueso de Storia della Scienza (expensive) Palazzo Vecchio- tower (expensive)
"Ponte Vecchio- bridge, then shop (free)
"Piazza della Signoria- walk by
"Via di Tornabuoni- good shopping, like 5th ave
"Bobli Gardens- beautiful greenery (expensive+ 2 museums that look just ok)
"San Miniato al Monte- hill above Florence, church (free) (far)
"Pitti Palazzo- palace with 4 museums (expensive)
Day 3 Train to Venice in AM
Editors note: Day 3, burst into flames!!!
Actually, you ought to see the plans for the following 2 days in Venice!
Now, I know that it's cruel of me to judge other people. But Oh My God. This person, if he/she survives the trip, is likely to return home HATING Italy and complaining about how everyone and everything is horribly rushed and chaotic and that La Dolce Vita is a big lie.
BTW, the ANSA article concluded by noting that World Slow Day is spreading. Apparently, the plan to mark the occasion in New York is a three-day Slow Festival which will apparently see New Yorkers who try to walk too fast through Union Square, stopped and given a ticket.
A total of 90 'Slow Cities' in 11 countries inspired by the 'live well' philosophy and linked to the Slow Food movement are also supporting the day, ANSA reports.