Thanks to Charlotte's introduction, we are staying for our last two nights with an Italian friend in her apartment at the top of a palazzo near San Ambrogio. In other words, we have a room with a view - over San Miniato al Monte to the South and Fiésole to the North.
Two nights, but really only one day, so we have been making the most of it, and are now completely exhausted, what with so much walking. We started off at Santissima Annunziata, its beautiful square and del Sartos - rather a shock after Siena's Gothic. Going backwards in time, we moved slightly West to San Marco: they were dismantling a dinosaur exhibition behind the church. Fast forward to Fra Angelico, however, and those extraordinary frescoed cells. On to San Lorenzo, and Michelangelo's Medici tomb sculptures ("Let me have men about me that are fat." Women too in his case.)
But even after all of this, and a caper through the Duomo and over the Ponte Vecchio, Santa Maria Novella has been the highlight of today. The church's outside appearance is no preparation for what's within, particularly the Ghirlandaios. All the history of which our hostess has been explaining to us over tea in an amusing way and in faultless English!