After our almost week-long Parisian Dream we headed to our new home in Firenze, Italy. Paul and I don’t like to call it Florence. I think “Florence” sounds like an old lady, a dentist appointment in your day planner, or a parent calling you in for dinner on a summer night when all you want to do is play.
“Firenze” – now that sounds much more accurate for how the city makes me feel … Fee-ren-zay. As a sound, it reminds me of the moment when something opens up to you and reveals itself. Flowers, the day their buds burst into spring. The olive oil that soaked into your bread and then onto your tongue, that moment when the prosciutto melts in your mouth, the feeling you get when you turn a corner in a crowded art gallery and see the first glimpse of a breathtaking painting – well you get the idea.
Why Firenze, you may wonder? Why did we choose to stay in Firenze for 3 months during our Italian adventure?
It may come as a surprise, but Firenze isn’t even my favorite Italian city! But, it is the perfect location for us because of the following:
1. It’s an accessible and friendly place to observe and participate in everyday Italian life.
2. Firenze is a great centralized location to see many different parts of Europe and Italy. It’s not too far from anything and it’s near two different airports (Florence and Pisa), as well as train stations. That makes it economically and distance-wise a great place to live.
3. Compared to DC and other Italian cities, Florence is very affordable. Since we saved our money and work remotely it’s easy for us still go out, have nights out, and take vacations without breaking the bank.
4. Since neither I or Paul are fluent in Italian, it’s a great city for us to live in. We always begin conversations in Italian, then when we run out of phrases we proceed in English. People in Firenze appreciate you trying, but are also able to converse in “Inglese.”
5. Firenze is an easy city to get cozy in. The food, the slower pace, the weather, and people help you ease into savoring your aperol spritz. The Arno isn’t a rushing river rapid! It’s a calm still river that reflects all the lights peacefully each night.