Firenze/ Roma – Day 8

Florence - Italy
We are enjoying being Catholics in Italy. We started the day hoping to see the inside of the Duomo- Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, but the imposing line to enter the church scared us away. Instead we chose the Baptistery, where Catholic Mass was being held and thus the church was only open to those attending Mass. What a perfect opportunity to attend mass…in we went with a tiny handful of attendees. It was a beautiful experience. Of course the mass was all said in Italian, but catholic liturgy is same all over the globe so we felt right at home. Receiving communion in such a structure was profound. The Baptistery is well know of the outside doors done by Ghiberti telling the stories of the old testament..”the gates of paradise”. The inside structure is equally inspiring. The interior dome is decorated with a 13th century gold mosaic of a giant figure of Christ with images of death and resurrection…..the meaning of a Christian baptism. After this we crossed the Arno to visit the Pitti Palace and the Boboli gardens. The gardens are a beautiful maze of paths, ponds, views, fountains and fruit trees all blended into an aggressive hillside hike. We were offered vistas on one side of the entire city of Firenze from a birds eye view and on the opposite side of Tuscan hills with Villas and olive groves. It was the perfect way to say good bye to Firenze. Now off to Roma. Buona Notte. Maleka

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