A Different Florence Moment

The green plant that valiantly attempts to protect me from street noises and exhaust touches my arm as I write. It feels cool on the square inch of flesh it touches. I want to thank it.

Three slender young girls wearing black tops and pants stand in a circle talking and laughing. At some signal they part and cross the street single file.

An image of high heels, short flirty black skirt and red tank top assail my senses. Silky dark hair moves with each long step. Her companion? A rather ordinary looking young man.

My second cup of coffee is gone and a breeze stirs to accompany the overcast. It's time to go. I am a Signora on the move, and I know I'll be able to transport myself to this Florence moment whenever I choose.

And since my only photo of this moment was in my heart, here is a picture from a different Florence moment.

Shopping in Florence

Shopping in the heart of Florence feels very different perhaps because the stores themselves are quite different than anywhere else I've been. Merchandise is often displayed in a minimalist fashion - one item on a stand - maybe 3 more to the side on a shelf. I am aware of the quiet. A few stores have music but most do not. Proprietors are helpful but let you look on your own as well. They all speak some English, and probably other languages, as well as their own Italian. As I walk into a shop, though I feel a bit out of place in my obvious "American tourist body and clothes" they are gracious and helpful.

I am buying a pair of leather gloves for a friend back in the states. The store is on the Piazza St. Lorenzo. That doesn't mean anything it just feels right to say that. I'm feeling good about it all. Nearby, out in the Piazza are about a hundred stalls full of cheaper stuff, some good quality, some not, but I am here in this quiet store spending many Euros of someone else's money. Lovely. Two doors down I enter the Passamaneria Toscana store where I buy a 12 inch square pillow cover with tassels for myself and 4 separate tassels to give to friends. I see beautiful drapes, scarves, throws, pillows; every type of exquisite cloth to tempt me. I look up and realize that I've been here at least an hour. Beauty does that to me.

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