Diary entry for Friday May 21 - Hotel Excelsior, Florence, Ruffilo
Up rather early as we wanted to leave by 9 so we could get to Florence as early as possible. For a change we had a lovely sunshiny day for driving. It was a most interesting drive and we saw a lot of picturesque little hill towns. We went out of the way to go over to Sienna which is an old, old town, but most attractive. They have a fantastically beautiful Cathedral there of black & white marble in stripes. The plaza square is also most interesting, being in the shape of a shallow bowl. Each summer they have a very --- horse race in which the various merchants dress their old nags in Medieval trappings & race them around the square to the cheers of the populace. We didn't stop for lunch although we did get an introduction to one of the restaurants there. It wasn't too far from there to Florence and we got in shortly after 1. We --- lovely room & we got our things unpacked & hung up --- down to lunch which was a light one. Paul ate with us. After lunch we went after a paper for Duncan [Hines] then Nell, Paul & I went window shopping along the various thoroughfares. We did buy ties - or at least Nell did - I bought one for Duncan of handwoven silk, lovely but rather big. We looked at blouses, looked for Florentine bags, walked to the Ponte Vecchio where we ran into our Montreal friends. Back to the hotel rather late, rested and gabbed a bit. Nell & I changed clothes & then we all four out to Ruffilo's which was listed in my book as the only outstanding restaurant here. It had loads of atmosphere, the food was very good. We all had something different & we all enjoyed it very much. Back to the hotel rather late after a short walk to the car. To bed right away.
Florence, Italy, Travel Diaries