Ned needed to be in Italy for 2 1/2 weeks and then in Saudi Arabia for a week. I hate when he is gone for so long so he offered me the opportunity to go with him for 2 weeks....of course I said yes! Most of where he was going I have been to several times but there are always new places to explore. While he worked I took day trips. Had to drive a stick shift...managed without stalling out or stripping gears. We had a long weekend so I took him to places he hadn't been. First was San Gimignano.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Gimignano). I hadn't been there in almost 20 years. It really has changed. The tourists have descended and it looks just like most of the other Italian towns that cater to tourists...cafe's every other place and lots of touristy shops. Bah! The views are still spectacular though. I love the old medieval cites.
From here we drove to Siena, another Tuscan hill town. It was founded by the Etruscans. Spring has definitely sprung here and poppies grow like weeds all over.
Gelato is everywhere ...Ned found me lactose free so I could eat it. The fruits and veggies are so fresh.
There are street artists in most of the tourists spots. They are usually dressed in accurate period costumes and they hold their poses so well that at first glance they look like statues.
Next stop is Florence. Florence is one of my favorite cities and I have been here innumerable times. This is just a short stopover as Ned has to be elsewhere tomorrow and we have a long drive ahead of us. We just have the morning. The Ufizzi Gallery is under going extensive renovations...I thought to spend some time here this morning but the weather was glorious so we just decided to stroll around.