We were up at 7:30am this morning ready for breakfast at 8:15 and heading off on the coach at 8:45. We went to the leather factory to watch the demonstration first, and then we had half an hour to look around the shop. I ended up buying a red bag at the last minute after I saw someone else buying one. It's a little bit different to my normal bags though.
From here we walked to meet our tour guide ready for the walking tour around Florence. Before we started though, we quickly got some gelato ice-cream. I went to the toilet while I was here and I couldn't figure out how to turn the taps on to wash my hands. Then I realised that there was a foot pump to push. I hadn't seen one of those before, but since then I have seen 3, so it must be an Italian thing.
None of us particularly enjoyed the walking tour because Florence is based a lot around art, so if we were art historians then we would have enjoyed it more. The tour guide also only had a small microphone and I couldn't hear most of what he said. Plus it was so hot and we all have sore, fat, swollen feet/ankles.
By the time we finished that, it was lunch time so we went to find somewhere to eat lunch. A group of us found a large restaurant and I just had pizza. When it came out I thought it looked incredibly plain and I don't think it even had cheese on it. So I added some Parmesan cheese, because they bring that out for every table here, and it was actually very tasty.
After lunch we didn't really have any time to do the hop on hop off tour that we had hoped too, so we basically just had another wander around. There were a few shops and market stalls to look at. I bought a scarf from a market stall. However, being 31 degrees today (and 34 tomorrow), I doubt I will be wearing it any time soon! We also bought a small 'Florence' fan from a stall as well, to try and keep cool. We ended up spotting a wifi cafe, and since we had time to fill in, we decided to go in there and get a drink and use the internet. I also ordered some biscotti - this wasn't on my bucket list, but I thought since it was on the menu, I may as well try the real stuff. They ended up bringing me out about 10 pieces! And to be honest, I like the stuff at home better. So I didn't end up finishing it all, but at least I tried another Italian dish.
After this, it was basically time to head back to the bus and back to the campsite. We actually had over an hour to get ready for our night out tonight. First we went for a group photo at the top of a massive hill with a lovely scenic backdrop of the city, which we are able to buy, and then we went out for a Tuscan dinner. As soon as we arrived, we were served an entrée and then we basically had a banquet of pasta - lots of different samples to try. Then we had some tiramisu for pudding, and a shot of limoncello. So far, I've tried Italian pizza, pasta, and gelato (off my bucket list - which I think is everything), and also biscotti.
After dinner, we headed to the Space Electronic Disco which is a Florence nightclub. There's still a lot happening around all of the little streets of Florence at 10:30 at night. Apparently there had been a fashion show on the night before in the middle of the night. I just don't think people sleep in Europe. This was the first time Stacey and I had gone out this whole trip. The nightclub had a second story to it, and was much fancier than any club around Palmy! Everyone was having a good night except for aching feet.
Italy generally has a different way of paying for things too. When we walked in, we were given a card which you used to pay for drinks. Each time you got a drink, they clipped the cost on the card and after 4 drinks you went and paid at another counter. Then you had to get a different ticket to leave the club, which you got once you had paid up. If you lost your card then it cost 50€. Stacey went home earlier in the night but I stayed longer. However a bit later, my swollen feet were just hurting too much to stay so I wanted to go back to the campsite, but we needed to catch a taxi and I didn't want to get one on my own. So it became a bit of a mission to try and find someone to share a taxi back with. There were so many dramas going on that night (but that's another story). Finally, after about an hour, we sorted out the taxis. I actually ended up getting my taxi for free because I shared it with one of the Contiki tour managers and he was able to get the company to pay, so that was a bonus. Then it was time for bed with about 3 hours sleep before needing to get up at 6:30am.
Tomorrow we're off to Rome and Vatican City.