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Craig on Italy

Pisa Travel Blog

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A quick walk around Pisa before taking the train to the centre of Italy.
You know, I've been pretty bad with this blog. I came back from Italy last October and all I did was post up some of the photos and no blog. I think at the time I was quite taken away by the whole thing and wasn't sure I could do get across how I felt about Italy and a week led to a month and so on. Now though is the time to tell all. I wrote a blog while I was in Firenze on the hotel notepad that I found in my room which I'll dig out soon; unfortunately with moving home now on me I've packed it away in a box, but I will find it.

My trip to Italy was quite a strange one, destination driven by music. A couple of years ago I re-lit my interest in Classical music and in the process discovered the composer Mascagni. Pietro Mascagni, an Italian composer from the late eighteen to mid nineteen hundreds.
Pisa central railway station, waiting for the train to Firenze.
I got to know one of his most popular Opera's quite well and so decided that I should discover "Opera" for myself, in the very same country of the composer. That country of course was Italy, I looked on the net and found that the opening night of Cavalleria Rusticana would be performed at the Teatro del Maggio in Firenze (aka Florence), Tuscany. The price was exceptionally good, I booked my tickets and a flight from Bristol in the UK which would land in Pisa. I booked Italia train tickets online that would whisk me the hour and half journey to Firenze by electric for a fraction of the cost of a ticket from Cardiff to London. The tickets arrived in plenty of time and everything was set.

The flight was good, it was delayed by well over an hour and I feared the holiday break was about to be tarnished but we were soon on our way, flying over the Alpes and landing in Pisa airport. Pisa airport was quite an experience. It's quite a small place compared to other cities I've been but had a mixure of commercial and military planes. Coming out to the lobby and looking over on the far right is a long queue going to the rail and bus ticket office, but thankfully I had my pre-booked tickets in-hand and the only thing I had to do was take my question to the tourist information desk, "Can I get off at Pisa Central, have a walk about and then jump back on another train to Firenze.' This was no problem provided I got on within something like, six hours.

The station is quite literally on the side of the airport about 10 seconds walk from the doors, I stamped my ticket in one of the little machines and there was the large electric train waiting for me at the platform. Within several minutes I was back off the train and taking a walk through Pisa, a surprisingly rather normal working city, some graffiti and quite understated in many places though I was only there for a couple of hours. I discovered a road name sign, "P. Mascagni" which gave me a smile. As I wasn't really in Italy for Pisa and my time there would be short, so I walked through the streets and up to the leaning Tower. For some reason I'd got it into my head that it was in some narrow lane way and would be thin and tall, it wasn't. The tower stands quite stout, tall and strong located off-centre of a well kept green open span next to a huge cathedral. The tower was certainly much bigger than I imagined it would be and impressive, it also really does lean, a lot! I got chatting to an older couple from the north of the UK while I was there and did some photos of them. There were also many American tourists doing there whistle stop tour. I was then strangely distracted when I sat on the stones along the edge of the cathedral when I noticed lots of people on the grass and in front of me on the paving pointing up in the air. Not at anything in one direction but in all sorts of directions. I then twigged. Someone else was always taking a photograph of them, lining up the tower so it would look like they were holding it up; there must be millions of these photos.

Pisa wasn't disappointing but I would have liked to have discovered more about the place. I trudged back to the station, it even sprinkled a little rain on the way though it was too hot to cover up at all. The train ride to Firenze was moments away on the low platform..

More later.
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A quick walk around Pisa before ta…
A quick walk around Pisa before t…
Pisa central railway station, wait…
Pisa central railway station, wai…
3,074 km (1,910 miles) traveled
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photo by: jsuuronen