On the walk to the Ufizzi we came across a medieval parade. Turns out it was the feast day of Saint Reparata, the patron saint of Florence. The cathedral was segmented off, bands played. But we couldn't stay to watch. Off to the museum!
Our "docent" was actually the head of the Art History department at the Florence University of the Arts, which is a part of the Palazzi school that handled most of the Florence segment of our tour. She was really friendly and knowledgable, asking each of us what we know about art so she could determine what story to tell for every piece of art. It brought back a lot of memories of the first class I took in Art History, when I studied abroad in the U.K, and the wonder of going from slideshows (on carousels, not even PPT!) to the real thing.
I've already mentioned how I feel about taking pictures of paintings, so I purposely don't have the Fra Angelicos and Boticellis to share (you've got to go to Florence yourself!). Instead I've got one of my best photos of the trip; it's a view of the Ponte Vecchio from the second story of the Uffizi, and yes, it's Instagram:
Marsha commented that she'd seen the same view 20 or so years ago, and it hasn't changed -- which makes sense, because it looks the same as when I saw it over a dozen years ago, too.
It was another morning of walking along cobbled streets and through long galleries of art, competing with other (larger) tour groups. My feet weren't doing so well, but a four-course lunch was upon us, which meant I could slip off my shoes under the table for a good while. So: totally worth it.