We were just craving an “American Breakfast”  this morning and there is this one place that advertises that so we went over there.  It was so good.  You don’t know what you are missing until you don’t have it.  It seemed like a pretty busy weekend in downtown Florence for the first of December.  We think there are a lot of Italian tourists that come to town for the weekend.  The cold weather was not stopping anyone from being out and about – including us.  I am reading this book written by Giorgio Vasari , a Florence artist and architect from the 1500’s, who wrote about other important artists starting with Giotto in the early 1300’s up to Michelangelo so all the things he has written about I want to see.  So the Medici Chapels were next on our list.  This is where you go to see some of Michelangelo’s biggest and best in one spot. The Chapels consist of three burial places:  the unimpressive Crypt; the large and gaudy Chapel of the Princes; and Michelangelo’s New Sacristy, a room completely designed by him to honor four Medici’s.  He lived with the Medici’s for quite a few years when he was a teen so he was very close to the people whose tombs he designed and sculpted.  It took him 14 years to do this work – he was 45 and finished at 59.  Even though these sculptures are beautiful the tombs were not completely finished and it is not known if that was on purpose.  The Chapel project was plagued by delays: design changes, late shipments of Carrara marble, the death of patrons, Michelangelo’s other obligations, his own depression, and revolution in 1527 which put Michelangelo right in the middle since he was a family friend of the Medici pope but a Florentine supporter.  So by the time he could come out of laying low he was convinced to go to Rome and start the Last Judgment in the Sistine Chapel.  He left, never to return to the Medici Chapels. Once we finished with the Chapels we went over to spend a couple of hours back at the Uffizi.  We have now been there twice and still have not finished seeing everything.  Luckily, our pass lets us go as much as we want.  Later this evening we attended a Christmas choir program at St. Mark’s Anglican church down the street from us to get us in the Christmas mood.  (I miss my choir!)

 

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