Saturday, September 24, 2011

Mon Ami Suisse!

Last year after my time in Italy was up, I visited Switzerland and Germany with Rachel. In Switzerland we visited my high school friend, Cedric. He lives in Baden, north of Zurich, and we stayed with his family for a few nights. They were so friendly and hospitable and fabulous!

Well on Labor Day weekend, Cédric and his friend Kathryn came to Firenze. On Friday, Cédric and Kathryn visited Arezzo! Andy and I met them at the train station after we got out of class, and showed them around the city. We brought them to the Duomo, Piazza Grande to watch some joust practice, Cremì--one of the best gelaterias in Arezzo, Il Prato to see the park and walk around the monthly antique fair, and an old Roman ampitheatre. We went to Il Vesuvio, a pizza place, for dinner and it was delicious! I had pizza with small tomatoes, eggplant, olive oil, pepperoni and more. In return, Cédric and Kathryn introduced us to an amazing little pastry snack thing called läckerli, in this case läckerli al citron (lemon). We devoured the box fairly quickly, and can't wait to be back in Switzerland this winter to buy some more!

The next morning Andy and I went to Firenze to spend the day with Cédric and Kathryn. We walked to the Palazzo Pitti, visiting the Boboli Gardens, their silver museum and Kremlin exhibit. It was all beautiful and really cool.

We had a picnic lunch of bread, salami, pesto and cheese in front of the Palazzo Pitti. Thank goodness our Swiss friends carry Swiss Army knives to cut the bread and cheese with! Some pigeons enjoyed our leftovers.

We walked around the city seeing the Piazza della Signoria (saw two just married couples there), Piazza della Repubblica, the Ponte Vecchio, Dante's house and the church he went to, plus a lot more! We didn't go in many of the churches because Andy and I will go back with Kirk's art history class. We did see some great art and enjoyed a fun day with our friends. We even saw Bob Stoop's favorite leather shop! I had heard about it last year when some friends found it, and we stumbled across it this year. I went in, and was pointing out Stoops' photo to Cédric and Kathryn when the store owner asked if I knew Bob Stoops. I said how I go to OU, and their first football game is that night--he said how Stoops sends all of his friends to this store, and that the owner "takes great care" of Stoops' friends. He said he'd give us some great offers, but unfortunately the cheapest thing in the store was 2000€. Unless that discount was 95%, don't think I could purchase anything.  We topped the night off with a delicious dinner at Trattoria ZaZa. I had steak with a salad and Andy had some gnocchi with Gorgonzola sauce. Delicious! 

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