A Little Bit of Me

Jottings and Writing, miscellanous misgivings

The truth?

Just noticed the smell yesterday. At first I thought it was the horses in the piazzas as they shit and pee but then when the rain started the smell got worse. Did a little detecting and found literally from the horses mouth ( florence council) that the old central city sewerage system is ancient and cant cope with 7tourists and any further burdens a d is a constant worry to hoteliers and tourist operators. Just check out Trip Advisor and the comments about Florence are mixed with the bad smell, overcrowding, crappy choices apart from churches, museums, and expensive shopping. Not a great start to my day.
Bad night full of dreams of being lost in narrow smelly alleys with bands of spruikers.

Speaking of which. I was approached by a ghostly dressed wo an who mimimics the European cheek kiss and the handshake. Immediately suspicious that she had managed to get close and personal she then produced her begging cup. Later a saw a bent, crooked old lady dressed reminiscently like Mother Theresa, getting close and personal with families with children and showing motherly adoration for the bambinis. Once they were out of sight she miraculously stood erect, hung her stick on her bony arm, dropped the fake smile and trotted off to the group of victims. . Seems they are all beggars, possibly Romanian, possibly gypsies, possibly pickpockets. A problem right throughout Italy and wider Europe. The Florentines, ever a tolerant antiracist lot put up with them but others call for them to be treated less humanely. You have to admit it’s a slick operation for the unwary foreigner. Italy does have a good social security system so its mainly illegals who are the visible beggars.
Our neighbour has started his early morning operatic wakeup call. Last night it was loud Arabic music for a few hours but this a.m. he must be feeling more nostalgic.
Visited museo Palazzo Davanzanti this morning and the reality of Florence and tourists became apparent. Even though it is the tail end of the season the piazzas are overcrowded by 10 a.m. and moving around becomes a nightmare. The sewer smells a really bad after the storms and midweek the local vendors seem pissed off. We leave for Bologna tomorrow morning and even though I have been entranced by some aspects kf Florence I wont miss the noise, crowds, smells (particularly critical of tobacco smoke), the tourists (although I am one), and narrow, cobbled streets. Oh! And wasps (vespa) in pizzas. (another time)


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