Thursday, March 17, 2011

Italian Unification and a special visit!

If there is one thing that Italians are especially good at, it's celebrating! Sometimes, as in the case of this week, the celebrations are a bit last minute. About two weeks ago, the Italian government decided it would be a good idea to throw a huge celebration honoring the 150th Anniversary of the Italian Unification (150 years of all the regions in Italy being united under one government). Leave it to Italy to plan a HUGE country-wide party at the very last minute! 

The celebrations began this past wednesday and continued all through the night. Everyone got off work today and school was cancelled to ensure that everyone could party the night away! Wednesday night was crazy here!!! I have never seen the streets so packed with people! All the state museums were open until 1 AM, the entire city was lit up in RED WHITE and GREEN, there was a patriotic parade, there were bands playing in every square, and amazing fireworks off of the top of the Palazzo Vecchio building. It was so neat to see all the Italian pride here! Italian flags lined the streets, gelato was made in red, white, and green, and people even dressed to theme! Sometimes it can feel like tourist city over here because of all the americans studying abroad and school groups, but this was true ITALIAN spirit and all the true Italians were the ones out to celebrate. 

Today I had a WONDERFUL visit from a best friend from TCU, Lizzie. Lizzie and her aunt have been in Rome this past week and got to come to Florence for the day today. I still cant believe she was actually here; seeing where I sleep, where I go to school, my favorite spots...its so surreal! I had SO much fun taking her and her aunt around Florence and, a HUGE win in my book, I didnt even get them lost!! I LOVED catching up with Lizzie and hearing all the TCU news. It was such a comfort to hear that things were not drastically changing back home and that everyone was still doing alright. A visit from a good friend is always nice, but it is definitely extra special when its a visit from halfway around the world!!! 

Piazza Signora all lit up 

....and Piazza de Republica

Palazzo Vecchio 

The Pointe Vecchio bridge in Tri-color 

amazing fireworks show

Lizzie in Florence! 


Lunch with the whole group! 
I am off to Greece tomorrow for Spring Break!!! Cant wait to be there for a whole week!!! 


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