News & Blog

Pottery, Beaches, and the Duomo


We woke up early Sunday morning, excited for a day at the sea shore, despite the fact that we had to rise early. We piled into the bus, and we absorbed the Italian countryside through the windows as we drove. When we finally reached the beach, our noses met with the salty, refreshing sea air. We passed the day filled with joyful leisure, walking along the crowded shore, lying out in the sweltering sun, shopping at the local stores, eating gelato, and taking refreshing dips in the sparkling sea.

Our departure from the beach was bittersweet; we were sad to leave the sea shore but excited to see the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. We mounted ourselves on stools to get the famous picture holding up the tower. Some Abbey Road students put their own spin on creating pictures: One girl posed licking the tower, and another posed with her leg fully extended in the air.

Today, my friends and I made the exhausting trek up the Duomo; because we were climbing between the two domes, the passage was dim, stuffy, and extremely tight. The view that awaited us at the top, however, was well worth the endless flights of stairs. It afforded us a breathtaking and spectacular view of our city.

Later, we delved further into Florence’s rich artistic culture when we visited a ceramic studio. There, we met a potter who told us the history of pottery from the early 1300’s to its development in the Renaissance to modern day. I chose to paint a fish pattern on my plate, which strayed from the traditional Florentine designs to a more modern one. My friends, however, chose to paint more traditional patterns, using circles, squares, ovals, and diamonds to create a geometric border, leaving the center free for a small picture such as a castle, crest, or lemons.

I look forward to more adventures in the coming week and especially to soccer tomorrow! Ciao from Florence! -Sienna