Happy Galentine’s Day!

Hello everyone! I hope you are all having a fantastic Valentine’s Day! I’m sending lots of love from Italy!

Today we visited the city of the greatest love story ever told: Verona. We woke up super early to catch a bus, and tried to get some sleep on the three hour journey, because we knew we’d be spending the whole day at the Verona in Love Festival.

We had a tour guide show us the sites of Verona. While he didn’t do a very great job getting information across (more of point, talk for a couple seconds, and move on), we still enjoyed the sites. Verona has a lot more beautiful ancient buildings than Florence. For instance, a huge Coliseum and the original gate into the city are still standing.

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The Coliseum
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The gate to enter Verona. Bodies used to be not allowed to be buried inside the city walls, so the ground outside is filled with them.
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This is an ancient whale bone hanging from the arch. Literally no one knows how it got there or why it’s there.

We were also shown the houses of the two star-crossed lovers. Romeo’s original name was Cagnolo Nogarola, but considering that’s a breed of dog, his name was changed for the story. It’s still unclear to me whether or not Romeo and Juliet is a true story. Juliet’s house is located on Via Capello, which is pretty close to Capulet, right? I think most likely is that a similar story happened in Verona, and then Shakespeare went and blew it out of proportion, as theatre people have a habit of doing!

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Romeo’s house. The decorations on the top of the roof, the inverted triangles, is an architectural design unique only to Verona. At least that’s what it seems like!
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Juliet’s house. Notice the huge crowd waiting to get in the courtyard!

About this point, it started to rain. Cold and hungry, we spent way longer than we should have deciding on a place to eat. We finally settled for a pizzeria a couple blocks from the city’s center.

After eating we went back to the surprisingly quickly moving crowd in front of Juliet’s house to get inside. The entryway is filled with letters to Juliet, mostly stuck on with gum and bandaids.

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Romantic and gross at the same time!

Once inside you could pay to go inside and go up to the balcony, but our guidebook said that was a waste of time and money. We got great pictures from down below anyways!

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In the back of the squished courtyard was a bronze statue of Juliet. If you rub her right boob it’s supposed to bring you luck in love! Worth a shot, right? We waited in line with the rest of the wet tourists to fondle a bronze boob and get our picture taken.

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I think my one true love just looked around in confusion.

What’s next after cheesy romantic tourist traps? That’s right. Valentine’s Day Festival! And that means Valentine’s Day CHOCOLATE!

There were a lot of booths selling jewelry and wine and other delights, but we pointed our taste buds towards the little square that held all of the chocolate booths. I got four different kinds of truffles: chocolate, pistachio, coconut, and almond. They were so good!

We goofed around Verona taking pictures after having eaten our fill, and then headed back to the bus for a long, WET bus drive home.

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Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! Enjoy your chocolate and romance!!
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