This was the first weekend of the semester that I didn’t have any trips planned, so of course I signed up to go on a field trip. The field trips are led by the art history teacher, who is like a walking encyclopedia. On her field trips, it’s just constant information while constantly walking, but you get to see a lot of cool places that you’ve probably never heard of. Also it’s free! I met the group at the bus stop at 7:30 Saturday morning, and we rode a charter bus about an hour to Siena. First, we went to a church that held the head of St. Catherine, as well as her thumbs. The skin on her face has “miraculously” been preserved, so she just looks like a decapitated, embalmed head. Next, we went to the Museo Civico and saw a lot of fresco paintings.
We then took a coffee break, so I got a Nutella croissant and a hot chocolate, which was super thick and creamy. The cafe was in the very famous piazza where each of the ten districts compete in a horse race every year. If you google Siena, you’ll see a picture of this building:
We then went into the museum for the cathedral.
We then took a break to eat lunch, so me and a friend walked around until we found a pizza place where we could sit, because we were exhausted already. They actually had pizza that was not thin crust, which is rare in Italy! Most pizza here is thin and kind of chewy. This, however, was so good, as was the caffe latte I ordered. We met the rest of the group at a popular bar that had rows and rows of desserts. I got some kind of cake thing, which of course was delicious.
We then rode the bus to San Gimignano, a smaller city not far away. I loved the simple, country architecture here.
We went to another museum with some more Renaissance artwork. We then waited in the cold while our professor bought some white wine, wild boar salami (which is big in San Gimignano), and some pecorino cheese. We went up this tower to sample it all, and it had some amazing views of the city.
I was particularly pleased to see the leaves beginning to turn, because there aren’t any trees in the center of Florence, where I live. After that, we left and rode a little over an hour back to Florence. I was really glad I went, really glad I wore a raincoat, and really kicking myself for wearing my walking sandals, because it was rather cold and rainy and my feet were wet all day. I would definitely like to go back to San Gimignano and take time to eat there. It was a lovely place.