Girl in Florence aka Georgette Jupe

I started this blog as a writing outlet for me to share what it is I adore about the beautiful city of Florence and Italy also sharing travel tips and stories along the way. Now 'Girl in Florence' includes advice for Florence, artisan features, interviews with locals, tips for life in Italy and travel posts from all over Europe. I'd love to think of myself as a fearless badass but If I am keeping it 100% real on this blog a quote that I sort of live by is"I haven't failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work." I hope you enjoy this journey with me.

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Viareggio Carnivale 2012, Can you say…amazing?

22.02.2012 No Comments

Viareggio Carnivale 2012, Can you say…amazing?

22.02.2012 No Comments
yep that is the infamous "captain coward' from the doomed Concordia ship

After writing about different carnival celebrations in Italy, I knew I had to go to at least one this year that I have never before been to.  Though I live in Florence and it’s a stones throw away from Viareggio, I had never been to it’s famous carnivale celebration. Always choosing to instead hit up the more famous cousin in Venice, I thought why not force t-man to hope on a train and see this parade for ourselves. So very last minute, spontaneous, or as Italians would say, perche no?

We were lucky to find absolutely gorgeous weather and managed to elbow our way in and grab seats on the very “clean” train via trenitalia ( tickets are now 20% higher by the way..geez 8 euros one way now? ) . The trip was a short hour and 20 minute train ride while on each stop arrived more and more people with all sorts of bizarre and fun costumes. I counted at least two Harry Potters, a “computer”, bumble-bee, and a few bananas..( obviously the banana’s in pajamas theme song is now going to haunt me for at least a week, noooo! ).

One thing I really appreciated about the people in attendance was that it literally was an all age event,  from newborns to the elderly, everyone was having a great time. I lived in New Orleans for basically the first 5 years of my life and have some fond, yet vague memories of  going to the Mardi Gras parades with my parents and the mountains of beads, toys, and candy showered upon us.

where's waldo? ( he would fit in quite nicely here.. )

Once we arrived and entered “carnival territory” we were immediately impressed with the parade of huge paper-mache floats with all sorts of political satire ( they managed to even include the infamous captain of Concordia cruise ship ). As usual in Italy due to its rich history, it astounds me to imagine that this famous event has been taking place for over 130 years.

effigy of Sarkozy with Monti & Merkel in bondage attire..

After a few hours walking up and down the streets admiring all of the festivities, of course our sad lunch of homemade sandwhiches wasn’t going to cut it so we decided to get some snacks. I was absolutely THRILLED when I  actually discovered a churro stand on a side street in Viareggio. Obviously I am no stranger to this treat after living so close to Mexico and mine came with a little cup of dulce de leche to dip them in. Needless to say, I was in a sugar-filled coma for at least the two seconds it took me and t-man to eat them all.

churros in Italy, you heard it here first

We loved checking out everyone’s costumes, especially the children. It was hilarious for me to see whole families wearing the same costume, so very Brady Bunch. In the one moment when t-man and I got separated some kids sitting on a window ledge took advantage of the opportunity to spray me with their silly-string.

cute kids but beware..they have weapons

As you can see above, I wasn’t the only one to get sprayed but it was all part of the festive atmosphere. We ended our short day trip  by checking out the beautiful pier and sunset then headed back to catch our (very crowded) train back to Florence. It really was a fantastic day in that it was both t-mans and my first time there and I hope to go again next year to see what amazing floats they will come up with. In my opinion , no matter what age you are, you can never get enough..carnivale..

Vintage Poster


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GirlInFlorence

Georgette Jupe is a 'Tuscan Texan' digital social media marketing maven based in Florence, Italy. When she's not at her day job as social media manager and content editor at ITALY Magazine, she's creating social strategies for international clients and providing travel, foodie & life tips via her blog 'Girl in Florence'. Hobbies include plenty of reading, hiking, beagle cuddles, the hunt for the 'perfect' Moscow mule and laughs with the girls.

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    Gil 23.02.2012 at 0:38

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful photos! Too bad they don’t celebrate the holidays with that much love here in the USA. Well, except for New Orleans….

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    About Me

    About Me

    Hi There!

    Ciao, I'm a curious American "Tuscan Texan" who calls Florence, Italy home for the past 11 years. I am the editor at Italy Magazine and I also work as an established digital social media marketing strategist (5+ years) as well as a freelance writer. My bylines have appeared in Lonely Planet, Luxos Magazine, and International Living. This blog is my way to share what life is like living and working abroad, as well as provide up-to-date true advice on traveling and living in Italy, weekend trips around Europe, and a monthly roundup of interesting events. I'm married to a wonderful Frenchman and we have a Florentine beagle who rules the household. Keep in touch with our adventures with your favorite glass of franciacorta or espresso!

    Georgette

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