by Melinda Gallo

In Florence to celebrate the New Year

It’s the first day of the year and I am in my beloved city. My beau and I took a three-day trip to Venice and returned in time to celebrate the New Year in Florence. The streets were virtually silent after last night’s festivities that went on until early this morning. When I woke up this morning, the only sound I heard was the church bells echoing throughout the city on the hour. With bright blue skies overhead, we walked along the Arno while only a handful of people were wandering the streets. I was eager to go to the Ponte Vecchio because I was hoping that the “Buon 2015” sign would still be hanging on the ponte (bridge), and it was.

Living in Florence :: In Florence to celebrate the New Year

We strolled along the Arno to via Tornabuoni and then onto the Palazzo Strozzi to have colazione (breakfast). Not many bars were open, but fortunately the Cafè Giacosa was.

In the afternoon, we headed down the Arno again, but this time all the way to Piazza Ognissanti. We wanted to have a drink at SE-STO on Arno to enjoy the lovely sun shining brightly over the city.

Afterwards, we walked toward the Ponte Vecchio, through the Giardino delle Rose, and then up the steps to Piazzale Michelangiolo. The piazzale was crowded so after taking a few photos, we went to San Miniato al Monte. For the first day of the year, I wanted to enjoy a different view of Florence and take a photo (which I posted on my Instagram account).

We returned to my apartment before sunset. In the end, I was happy that so much was closed today. It was nice to just walk around Florence, take our time to get to where we wanted to go (we had to go slow with all the others doing the same as us), soak up the city’s energy, and enjoy the sights. There weren’t many distractions or anything to draw our attention away from the city itself. Today was definitely designed to be a day to reflect, relax, and recharge our batteries.

2015 is one of the first years I have been looking forward to. I’m not sure why, but it feels like it’s going to be very different and even interesting. Time will certainly tell, but in the meantime, I will continue to bask in Florence’s energy and enjoy each day as it comes.

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