Sunday, 10 November 2013

Not Drowning in Siena

We woke up to fierce thunderstorms, downpours and flickering power outages. We watched with not a bit of concern as a dry wash filled up with water and became a raging river in just a couple of hours. We had no idea that the storms were as bad as they were going to be, with major roads washed out and mudslides and lots of flooding and damage locally.


What to do but to hop in the car and drive to Sienna, hoping the skies would clear. They didn't very easily, and we spent a lot of time hopping around sheltering in churches in which the roof was leaking and the power would go out, which made the mummified saints all the more creepy.

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We walked into the famous main square. Twice a year, they have a bareback horserace through the plaza here, which is a big event of national pride. I actually looked into going for the race at one point, but it's a zoo, and ultra expensive to get a view.


Duomo di Siena dominates the skyline quite dramatically, with its beautiful marble facade. We would have paid any price of admission gladly just to get out of the storm and dry out for a bit. Thankfully, it was worth it as the interior was one of the more incredible sights.


It was kind of dark in there, but decorated brilliantly with frescos and mosaics on the floor.

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Unbelievably, it was pouring and storming even harder after a couple hours in the cathedral, so we headed out to find something to eat.


Which ended up being brilliant.

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As soon as we were down to the dregs in the wine, the sun started shining.


Tuscany turned on its charm, just like that.

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Although my original plan to drive to nearby Montepulciano for the afternoon since it's a supposedly adorable hilltop wine-name town, but that plan was diverted since the road from there to Siena was washed out, it was nice to walk around, retrace our steps and dry out. Also, chianti wasn't really all that bad in the end.

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