Florence Blog by Mike Fratangelo

One of the mornings we stayed in Florence I awoke at dawn to go for a jog throughout the city.  I was lucky enough to have been in Florence in 2005, when one of my paintings about the “Iraq war’ was juried into the Florence Biennale.  It was during this trip that I fell in love with Florence.  I could not wait to get back this time around.   So I did not want to waste any time in  the city.  

The thing that I loved about Florence was if you snuck away from all the hustle and bustle, I truly felt you could still feel the vibe and energy of the Renaissance.  Even in this modern day!  I was blown away by this fact on my first trip to the city.  These were the streets that Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci themselves walked!

So I snuck away for a morning job and it was just delightful- very, very few souls were out and about.  Through the meandering streets and giant Renaissance buildings I swear I could once again feel the essence of the Renaissance!!   It was one of the highlights for me at this travel seminar.  Piece of advice to future travelers, I feel there is real value and going off on your own sometimes, away from the group and hustle and bustle!!

Another thing that I loved about Florence was the Medici family coat of arms that you could find on fountains and churches throughout the city.  It is amazing to me that this family 500 plus years on is STILL affecting modern life!  Also the debate as to what the 5 balls in the coat of arms also fascinates me.  I prefer the theory that they are blood oranges! 

 Ah Florence you will always have my heart and soul!!

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