But whatever... BOOSH!
In Barcelona, we'll be staying at the Downtown Paraiso Hostel, a place run by four friends (which worked out in Switzerland... oh Switzerland! You'll always have a little piece of my heart, Simon.) This hostel, in a city filled with over-priced dumps, turns out to be reasonable and an even better catch if it lives up to its description. It's close to Las Ramblas, but not too close, and it looks chic but still cozy in hostel terms. (Though I'm not sure whether I love that room or just find the mural really creepy.)
As for Firenze, we'll be staying in Hotel Tina which, from what I gather, is about two - count 'em, TWO - blocks away from the chambers of les personnes célèbres - that is to say, PL and A-Town, the very people who are bringing us all together for this Glorious Amalgamation of truth and beauty. With their love for love. And love for holy matrimony. And love for gelato and really old things. Our hotel is close to San Marco, which is pretty groovy and about four blocks from the Mighty Stallions. Very exciting. Can't wait to swing by some of my old haunts...
Yeah that's right... what up, Standa? You got some pesca té for me? Is it Clever? Hm? Is it? And Astor, do you remember Bianca?
No, screw that noise. I hated Standa and their untamed surliness. That store is like a very unfunny version of Clerks. I'm going to the place near the Accademia, with the guy with the bandanna. (Two euro says he's still there.) Or the Mercato Centrale with its multi-leveled goodness. Rachel and I have already agreed we're probably on the wine, cheese, bread and fruit diet the whole time we're there. Which is fine. Hopefully, we end up dropping a few pounds and acquiring a healthy flush to our cheeks.
But my number one priority, apart from flying (literally flying, Mercury-style) into the arms of my beloved and stuffing my face with these bad boys, is to get some Sad Gelato Man gelato. Eryn and I have discussed this ultimate reunion many times and have only agreed that we must expect the unexpected. But in all likelihood, there will be a scene. And many awkward pictures taken.
Things that I want to do that I didn't do while in Firenze? Maybe hit up the Duomo ("Duo"/"dwhoah" for those in the know) and Santa Croce to see some tombs (Michelangelo, Machiavelli and Ghiberti). And the old favorite of catching the sunset at Piazzale and then hitting up El Taco, OF COURSE. And then Art Bar for a girls' night out. So much to do! (I like how the majority of my priorities revolve around food.)
What I miss the most is that these places (SGM's, El Taco, SACI, Art Bar, Fiddler's Elbow, the Odeon, this statue...) were such a focus and we were so attached and cared about them so much, it feels like no one else could come close to caring about them as we did - and do, to this day. So, in that respect, they're ours. And I can't wait to go back and show Firenze what I've become - a lot of which is due to it and the experiences I had there.
But for now all I have to do is buy a dress and show up! ...And find a way to pay for it all... but I suppose that's why Ramen and home-brewed espresso exist. Good thing I like home-brewed espresso, even with my little crappy steam-driven machine. Making coffee can be so meditative - I enjoy the process on the weekends, when I'm not in a rush. I think that would be one of the biggest bummers to a planned pregnancy - quitting caffeine. Stupid babies and their vulnerability to stimulants... why do they have to be such... babies??
And just for kicks, here's JR and the boys performing on Letterman Tuesday night. Yeah enthusiasm! Gotta love Zack's assistance on the cymbals.