My Birthday Cruise Report – Day 5, Livorno, Italy (Florence/Tuscany)

I woke up just before my alarm went off, which was a good thing considering the bow thrusters came on shortly thereafter. Something else it would be hard to sleep through in the front cabins. I kept waiting for the ropes to be shot out, but that must have been on the other side this morning.

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I had breakfast and wandered around the ship for a little while. My excursion wasn’t meeting until 1pm, so I had some free time on the ship.

Livorno is a very industrial port, so I couldn’t just walk off the ship and go wander around Livorno for a while. No big deal though.

I did a little math and decided to see if there happened to be a manicure appointment available. There was!

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I wandered the ship a little more before grabbing some lunch. Then I got my bag and headed to the theater to wait for my wine tasting excursion to leave!

The bus ride was a little warm, at least in the back, and I was next to one half of a couple (on the way back I switched seats with the guy – but note, if you’re a couple or group and want to make sure you get to sit together, don’t be the draggy last ones on the bus!)

Once we got out of the industrial port, the drive was pretty. The sunflowers were in full bloom – unfortunately the bus was going too fast to take decent pictures of them.

The winery (they also do weddings and events and are a three-room B&B)

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is set in the beautiful Tuscan countryside.

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We walked up a hill to the main building

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And met our guide. The buildings and grounds used to be a hunting lodge for the Medici family.

We learned a little – verbally – about how they make the wine and what wines they make (olive oil as well) and got to see some displays…

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And then we headed up to the tasting.

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We were taught the proper way to taste wine, and it was interesting even if I can’t really tell all the notes she was talking about. We had two kinds of salami, prosciutto, and cheese. There was bread with olive oil, but I couldn’t have any of that.

Of course, there was a shop.

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But I didn’t want to deal with checking the wine on the ship, and I didn’t want (and couldn’t afford) the minimum amount to ship back to the states (it was either 12 or 14 bottles!!) I did want a t-shirt…

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but they only had tiny and tinier left. 😦

So I wandered a little outside…

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and saw a bunny

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and then it was time to get on the bus for the ride back to the ship.

I got ready for dinner, which was good. I braved the magician show – not horrid, but it was a magician, so there are limits there.

We did a bit of rocking and rolling this night. I love it – I sleep really well at sea!

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