Wednesday, July 06, 2011

I Remember ... Siena

After breakfast and packing up we all realized that Siena would be our last city tour. It's a little sad to think that in a few short days we will return home. Instead of walking along cobbled roads and ancient ruins we will return to our jobs and daily routines.
Before starting our journey to Siena we stopped at Piazzale Michalagelo, a square located across the river overlooking the city. From this viewpoint we enjoyed a panoramic view of Florence and captured many great scenic photos. Considering the early morning hour it
was already warm but the soft breeze was refreshing.

Back on the bus ... and heading to Siena.

The bus ride became so routine ... we are in such good hands with our driver, Enzo! This was a great time to enjoy the scenery, take a nap, read a book, or ... play games on the iPhone. By this time I was addicted to Touch Rummy on my phone. It helped pass the time but I had to watch my battery life. We purchased two extra chargers so ... no worries ... play away : )
Siena, south of Florence was another town hit by the Black Death (bubonic plague) in the 1300's and lost a third of its population. From a major trade center and a population of 60,000 ... it never recovered. Today this medieval town is a thriving historic center. There are red-bricked streets leading to the fan-shaped main square, Piazza Del Campo at the heart of this pedestrian only area.

The sloping design encourages people to sit and relax. We noticed quite a few students from the nearby university. There are many narrow elevated streets to climb and views to enjoy.

It was here where we said goodbye to Bill and Marcia. They will join their daughter/granddaughter, who is a student at the university for another week in this area. It was hard to say goodbye and we realized there will be many more in the coming hours.
Since this is the last stop on our tour we needed to get serious about picking up souvenirs for family and friends. We discovered many fun shops in this adventure.
While waiting to leave we snapped another group photo. Walt took the photo ... later he was photoshopped in so everyone would be included. You can hardly tell!

We made one last stop at the AutoGrill and enjoyed our favorite ... Caprese sandwich before heading back to Rome. The reality of the tour ending was sinking in!

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