Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Italian Tale: A Day in Pisa

Unfortunately, no matter how long I wanted to remain amongst the beauty of Italy, alas real life awaited and so we came to the final day of our trip. Let's call it:

Day 16

As this was the last day, instead of using the structure implemented for Rome, Florence and Venice posts I thought I would just walk you through the day. This is partly because we didn't really see a lot of places but we did go to Pisa and get on a plane to Stansted, plus I thought it would be more fun to write and provide you with more content.


To begin with, I didn't sleep well and my charger fell out of the plug in the early morning which meant my phone wasn't at full battery and it needed to last until we reached London. Not a good start, but then as it was the day we were leaving dreamy, beautiful Venice it's not surprising. We arose early, showered and checked out wheeling our suitcases and walking the half hour to Mestre train station. In order to get to Pisa we had to take a train back to Firenze Rifredi (cue deja vu) and then a train to Pisa.The train to Firenze Rifredi reminded me of the Hogwarts train in Harry Potter because there are compartments for six people and a door to that compartment instead of the usual open plan seats.


At Rifredi we got a train to Firenze Santa Maria Novella (love how that just rolls of the tongue) and then walked to Pugi's which is near Galleria L'Accademia (the home of Michealangelo's David) and I got €4.70 worth of ham and cheese lasagna-like goodness. It was epic. We ate outside on the benches, the sky was grey and there was a cool breeze but it wasn't that chilly as we returned to the train station and bought tickets to Pisa Centrale for €7.90. While purchasing the tickets a homeless (I assume) woman came up to us asking for change; her insistence even after our firm yet polite refusals bothered me. I kept saying no and she even waited for our change to spill out of the machine and then started shaking her cup. I have nothing against beggars I assume they have suffered extraordinary circumstances to end up in that position because who wants to be curled uncomfortably on the hard dirty pavement, their face turned to the ground. In India, there are a million more beggars but these women seemed calculating and it irked me more than being swarmed by twenty malnourished children and their parents in Jalandhar. Which isn't pleasant, trust me.


In Pisa, we left the train station and walked to the river. Pisa is a surprisingly beautiful city as well, it reminded me of Florence except it has a little more polish and feels quaint where Florence feels like a relic of a different era. We devoured numerous cups of gelato at a place by the river, I had decided to spend the remaining euros jangling in my satchel entirely on food. It was my sole goal to have pizza in Pisa, I thought - and still think - that sounds pretty bad-ass.





Of course, we couldn't go to Pisa and not see the only monument there, to my knowledge, so we traipsed off to see The Leaning Tower of Pisa. At first glimpse I didn't think it was leaning at all, it just looked like a gleaming white tower, but that was just the angle we approached it from. We walked around it and took pictures, admiring the prettiness, it was shiny like a new penny and we sat on the grass close to it. After chilling and relaxing for a while, we went in search of pizza, I ordered a tomato and garlic pizza from a restaurant close by and we ate with the view of the tower.




It was bittersweet, knowing we had to leave for the airport soon, our intentions were to walk on foot as the airport wasn't far. We reached the airport with little trouble thanks to the gaggle of Chinese tourists with their suitcases helpfully leading the way for us. The airport was beautiful it was green and pretty outside, with shrubs sculpted into beings and white statues, it was a lovely airport. Inside, the shops were adequate and also crazily overpriced I wanted to buy my mother some coffee but it was an obscene amount of money. I spent my last four euros on Italian magazines, I don't really know what I was thinking I just wanted a souvenir because I hadn't actually bought any proper, traditional souvenirs, like fridge magnets, mugs, even tacky sunglasses, or plastic key rings, in any of the places we went.


I stupidly had abandoned my coat and cardigan on some seats by the shops on the ground floor and only realised this when I was about to board the flight. I had to scurry back and announce to every shopkeeper what an utter idiot I am. I almost lost hope and said a silent goodbye to my beloved camel coloured Mango coat when a little man with overly gelled hair emerged carrying my coat and cardigan in a bundle.


The flight was relatively uneventful, I sat next to a lovely woman from Yorkshire who had just been on a cruise with her Italian boyfriend. She sweetly spoke to me and helped me get my mind off all the things I usually ruminate over when I am in a plane that is soaring very very high into the sky. I read the little brochure Ryan Air provide you with and thought about all the places I want to visit, Norway has now made it onto that extensive list by the way.


Back in London, it was cold and dark as we arrived late at night we had to wait for our coach and then take a bus back to Leamington Spa. We reached our front door at half seven in the morning and I spent the next twelve hours sleeping. I was so exhausted. It was weird being home, it's just weird that you can do any number of things and it will completely change you on the inside but everything around you appears the same. Strange. I can't wait for the next adventure.


I hope you enjoyed reading about Italy, I apologise for how long it took to get it all on here and sincerely hope it wasn't a drag to read. My links are below and I love you all, tell me about your own adventures this Easter or places you want to visit in the comments below. Thank you!

Kiran xxx


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