ciao italia!

so long rain and hello shine! the scenery from switzerland to italy was just amazing - the mountains, water, villages and eventually sun!

we didn't have much of a plan for the day - just driving to see how close we could get to florence. once to florence, we were aiming to meet up with scott and reuben, who were making their way up from rome. we were making such good time that arranged to meet them tonight at a camping ground a bit outside of florence.

on the way, we passed by milan, mostly because we hadn't read about anything we were dying to see there and anyone i've talked to who has been there said it was unimpressive and didn't live up the hype. so we kept heading south!

that is until we needed to stop for gas. we decided to grab a quick bite to eat at the rest stop so we could keep driving and make it to florence before dark. and it just so happened that the fast food at this stop was macdonalds. certainly not our first choice cuisine, but we knew it would be quick and easy. or so we thought. turns out we stopped at the only major rest stop macdonalds in europe that didn't speak english. or at least didn't know the menu items in english (despite the fact that they are all printed in english). now i am not a language snob thinking the world should know english for my convenience, but this was just unexpected! after struggling with our orders for a bit, an italian woman next to us finally came to our rescue. such drama just to get a dumb hamburger - how disappointing.

but eventually we made it back on the road and into firenze just at dusk! by the time we made it up to the campsite it was pretty much dark and we had our fingers crossed they were still open. they were, but apparently the man behind the counter wasn't very happy about and here was our first encounter with the ever pleasant and friendly customer service in italy. aaaaand i'm being complately sarcastic. what is it about people who work in customer service in italy?? at least once a day i feared i was going to get my head bitten off or my coffee thrown in my face. the attitudes were a bit shocking at first, but once we accepted it and got used to it, it was just normal.

anyway, reuben and scott arrived in their little car and we all piled into the big tent to relax for what was left of the evening.


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