Wow have we seen a lot lately! I am currently laying in my bed in Venice...yes Venice! But more on Venice later (though I have to say it was the BEST way to spend my birthday! Not least of all because of this wonderful group that just made it even better!)
We were off doing a lot of day and weekend trips, so we'll just get right to the pictures!
One of my favorite things to do is night pictures. These are at the Florence Cathedral. We went all the way to the bridge and right when we got there, my camera battery died. The same night I did get pictures of the carosel and a Charlie Chaplin-esque street performer, who had people crowded around.
More night pictures to come, since I had to buy a new tripod.
This is the Cathedral in Siena. Welcome to the Gothic! (Like... the real Gothic... not some emo kids all in black). It was absolutely stunning! My only issue with this style is that there is often too much to look at, which makes it hard to really appreciate its parts for what they are. The overall effect, though, is nothing short of spectacular.
There is more than the tower to see in Pisa! We went to the Cathedral (needed our daily dose), the baptistry (with the best acoustics... sometime I'll get the video with the demonstration up) and here... the holy cemetery. Interesting sculpture and a beautiful fresco of the last judgement--complete with figures suffering from bubonic plague.
So EVERYONE takes pictures of themselves "holding up" the leaning tower. I thought it was funny to take pictures of how silly they looked while doing this out of context. I have a bunch, but those are the best.
When Carissa went to take my picture of me with the tower the conversation went something like this:
her: get over there like you're holding up the tower.
me: Do I look like an idiot? No.
her: Do it, or I'll smash your camera into a million tiny bits.
her: Do it!
me: Just take the picture!
I won in the end : )
These are from the start of our walk at the Cinque Terre. There are five little towns all connected by these trails. (or you can wimp out and take the train or a ferry). They are colorful and bright and all sit on the edge of the Medditeranian. Absolutely gorgeous!!!
There were locks all along the path. They were basically a memorabilia of people who had taken the trail before.
After most of our group wimped out after the paved easy hikes, Carissa the brave, Ashley the noble, Alex the Virtuous, Sir Varun the Daring and myself (Marie the Fair skinned) all continued on. There were a LOT of steps. This was only the beginning! Then the pavement went away and we really started the hiking! Totally worth the views we got to see!
The last of the four hikes were closed, so we had to take a ferry to the last town where the rest of our group was chilling on the beach. It was Varun's first ride on a boat in his life! We were all exhausted (and as you can see by the feet, rather dirty) but glad we had done it! The swim in the Mediterranian Sea after that was definitely refreshing!
This is from a waterfall at the Cinque Terre, but it's really only in here because it's pretty dang cool!!!
Until later! Ciao!