Being crafty and cheap, OL and I buy bread at the bakery the night before and figure we’ll eat breakfast in our room. 8€ for sweet breakfast sounds steep. Of course, the grocery store was not open at that time so we couldn’t get any jam.
But that morning, OL ran out and got us cherry jam and some fried sugar coated treats for me. Such a good boy.
After breakfast in our room, we go outside to rain. We have umbrellas. Good thing too because this rain started last night and showed no signs of leaving. We trudge to the center of town in a windy biting rain.
This doesn’t bode well for the day. We go to the Duomo Museum. It’s really cool. Different pieces of art on display. And you get the most awesome shots of the Leaning Tower from its courtyard. We saw pope couture, Etruscan art from BC era, wood inlay work, some paintings and statues from the Duomo.
A great place to seek refuge from the rain. Not crowded so we could wander around and take our time.
Then we headed out for lunch. The prices nearby seemed a bit much and we remembered walking through piazza Dante and seeing way better prices so we set out for there. But three problems: rain, cold, and sore thighs from climbing the baptistery.
We ended up missing the turn for the piazza and coming near to the Arno. Exhausted we grasped at the one straw in sight, a pizzeria. The prices seemed a bit high but we were too tired to walk on. We enjoyed our pizzas until the bill came. Or rather a hand written piece of paper with just a number:€24.50. for two pizzas and water?!
Obviously they are thieves, ripping us off. Remembering the prices from the menu and we can see how it gets to 18€, but 24.50? So OL asks her. Evidently she is charging 4€ for water and including a 2€ tip for herself. It’s pointless to argue, but this place should be avoided. It cafe bar Roma on Via Roma. Seriously run don’t walk away.
OL’s umbrella breaks and he nearly slices his hand open. We walk back to the center of town and buy a cheesy tourist umbrella that stinks but it’s really cute.
We hit a few souvenir shops along the way as we walk to the gate for a couple pics. Then freezing from the bone chilling rain, we head to the cemetery. The one that was nearly destroyed in a horrible bombing in 1944, where thousand year old frescoes melted away.
The cemetery is damp and cold too. But amazing to behold. Three of the frescoes were maintained in a room and we sit and admire them. There is a scene judgement Day and Hell where the people in Hell are literally in a sinner’s stew and naked women are being molested by snakes. And someone is being roasted on a spit.
The judgement part was so funny. Those being shoved into Hell are trying to escape and those not going to Hell are so serene. The other was the Triumph of Death. Also a stunning work. Personally, I think their looking old and missing pieces added to their value. I like to see old shit that looks old.
Freezing, we venture into Il Duomo to warm up. And catch another glimpse of the elusive Galileo’s lamp. Now that the guidebook cleared up what it looked like. Decide to forgo seeing the Leaning Tower lit up at night. Where the hell would we hang out for the next 3 hours in the rain?
We hit a few more souvenir shops. Wait for a taxi. And wait. And wait. Finally one arrives and we go to the hotel where we hole up for the rest of the evening until dinner when we buy more bakery bread and eat delicious Chinese food.
Have mixed feelings about Pisa. Loved our hotel and the nearby Chinese restaurant. Great deal on sites with the 5 for 10 euro card. But the food near the center was disappointing as was being ripped off. Also the long walk to the center in the rain really sucked.
Might go back to Tuscany but skip Pisa.