by Melinda Gallo

A playful Sunday in Florence

When I woke up this morning, I felt a twinge of excitement bubble up inside of me as I listened to the water flowing softly in the Arno. The moment I opened the windows of my apartment, I admired the warm colors glowing across the fiume (river) and inhaled the scent of my beloved city. I wanted to walk around one of the Florentine giardini (gardens), but already had plans to go to the stadio (stadium) to see the Fiorentina play. The last time I went to the stadio was in January.

To start off my Sunday morning, I had colazione (breakfast) at Vivoli with a girlfriend. Afterwards, I strolled through the narrow streets and into the Piazza della Signoria. On my way to the stadio, I went to another friendís pizzeria, which was around the corner from the stadio. After having an early pranzo (lunch), I entered the stadio and found a place in the sun to watch the partita (soccer match).

I have always loved calcio (soccer), but it wasnít until I started going to the stadio did I realize how passionate the tifosi can be. Emotions run wild and hit both extremes. When there is a bad call by the arbitro (referee), the offese (insults) echo throughout the stadio. Some tifosi kick the plastic chairs in front of them or pound their fists on the fiberglass walls. Once the anger dissipates, the cori da stadio (stadium chants) begin again so we can root for our squadra (team).

After trailing behind two goals, our squadra tied up the match with two calci di rigore (penalty kicks). The roar of the tifosi after each goal was deafening. People jumped for joy, hugged their friends, and screamed at the top of their lungs. The entire stadio trembled with joy. I find it exciting to watch the partita at the stadio: I enjoy the pull of emotions.

I walked through the residential area before arriving in the centro (town center) with the sun on my face. Most of the negozi (shops) were closed, but there were a lot of people strolling through the streets of Florence enjoying the mild temperatures and warm sun.

I ended my evening by having dinner with another girlfriend. Iím able to do so much in Florence because everything is within walking distance. Itís a small city that contains so much. I thoroughly enjoyed my Sunday here and look forward to enjoying more time in my beloved city.

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