Things have been rather calm in Florence these past couple of weeks with shops being closed and friends away on vacation. Besides my friends coming back to Florence, my other highlight this week was that my ortolano (greengrocer) finally reopened today after being closed for three weeks. I couldn't wait to go buy fresh fruit and vegetables from him. While he's been closed, I've been going to the three other ortolani in the area plus the mercato (market), but I haven't been as satisfied with what I purchased. I have realized in these three weeks just how great the quality of the fruit and vegetables that my local ortolano sells me.
I went to the mercato only a few times these past few weeks because it was so hot that if I didn't get out before 9 am, I didn't feel like lugging everything back home in the blazing heat. The two ortolani that were open near my place were more expensive and the fruit and vegetables weren't as good. So the past few weeks I've been a little upset although I also understand that with the heat, things spoil much faster.
Via dei Neri has seemed quite sad with so many shops closed for ferie (holidays). Today I was happy to see that many of the shops reopened. I popped my head into a few shops to say hello because I haven't seen some of the people in a while. Everyone seems to be in a fairly good mood although they are back at work.
One thing I definitely noticed in Florence these past few weeks is just how friendly and sweet everyone has been. I was so surprised the other day when I walked into the elevator at La Rinascente and two people greeted me. It isn't that common that that happens ever.
Unlike other years, however, more shops stayed open and it wasn't that difficult to find an open shop although the Apple stores were all closed when I needed one most. A small supermercato (supermarket) just opened on via dei Neri, which has proved to be quite handy for us to get water.
I am looking forward to the shops opening back up and the return of many of my friends by the end of the month. September is always an exciting month here because it's almost as if the city was in hibernation in August and suddenly it wakes up. There will be new things to do and see, and maybe a few classes to start going to as well.
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