Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Day 8-Vatican City and Florence

Yesterday morning, we got up bright and early to go to back to the Vatican. A local guide brought us through the Vatican Museum, the Sistene Chapel, and St. Peter's Basilica. We didn't get too much time in the museum, but we still got to see some very famous art (the school of Athens, for example). Next, the Sistene Chapel. Michelangelo's frescoed ceiling was very large and colorful, and it's incredible to think that somebody painted something that large. Every scroll, every cloud, every lock of hair. After that, we entered St. Peter's Basilica. I don't know about anybody else, but it really surpassed my expectations. It's grand and enormous. Also, the pieta is housed in the basilica (pictured below). The basilica was built on the grave on the first pope (St. Peter). Only the finest craftspeople were hired, and only the finest materials were used. The money used to build the basilica was raised by the Catholics by selling indulgences (granting people forgiveness for money), which was is one of the reasons that Martin Luther called for reform of the church. Nevertheless, it's truly grand, and I think that everyone can appreciate it now. After that, we rode the bus to Florence. Unfortunately, we didn't get to spend much time there, but we made the most of the time that we had. We had a guided tour of some of the major points of the city. For example, the Duomo, which is the nickname of a magnificent cathedral dating back to the 1400's. We also walked on the oldest bridge in the city, which is the only one in Florence that was not bombed by the nazis during WWII. One of the nazis in charge there appreciated the architecture and history of it and did not allow for it to be destroyed. We saw Michelangelo's David, which is a very well known statue. If you don't recognize the name, I'm sure you'll know it when you see it (pictured below). Michelangelo was just 19 years old when he sculpted it. We also saw the baptistery with the famed "doors of heaven," the old Medici castle, the church of Dante (the "inventor" of the Italian language), and many other beautiful buildings and streets. We walked out of the city along a river, and if you turned around, the scene was really just wonderful. You could see the old bridge reflected in the water, there were so many colorful houses and buildings, and there was this haze over everything. Let's just say that I will be coming back to Florence some day. 

Everyone's enjoying themselves and learning lots, and we can't wait to tell everyone all about it! I hope everything's going well at home and you don't miss us tooo much :) hahaha we might want to stay.

Katie :D

P.s. I just saw the Mediterranean Sea for the first time in my life 30 seconds ago!!

P.p.s. Sorry that we don't post on the blog every day. We really try to, but sometimes there are troubles with wifi. Thank you for understanding!


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