I started my search for yoga studios in Florence.
I really had to seek out a good spot! After asking many locals and my Hostel’s front desk crew where they practiced, I gave up and visited the tourism board. Once they understood my request they gave me a list of the two yoga studios in Florence. I sought out It’s Yoga, Firenze. Instead of a sweaty gym I found a studio built in an old monastery (figures). I was expecting an Italy woman to open the door but instead it was a handsome, built, blond haired, tanned man from Ft. Lauderdale who was lounging on the couch with his friend from LA. Their friend had moved out here in 2006 to open the studio and they were here to help out. Not quite authentically Italian but this worked for me.
I forked over 10 Euro — way beyond my daily budget of discretionary spending — and signed up for the 6pm class. Just as I settled in and started breathing with my eyes closed, I realized the instructor was speaking to me in a long string of Italian. “Oh, right. I”m in Italy. The class would be done in Italian.” That thought had never even crossed my mind. I don’t even know the words for “leg” or “up”, let alone “boat pose”. I worried immediatley that this class could be beyond my mental capabilities. I replied, simply, “no injuries”. The instructor, Max, a native of Florence, laughed and said he would try to translate for me where needed. Which was everywhere.
The class was intense in a way only my NYSC Mercer St yogi has rivaled. We weren’t technically doing hot yoga but the monastery-turned-yoga-studio did not have air conditioning and with the outdoor temperature at 41 degrees Celcius, we were all sweating like it was. After an hour and a half I was exhausted and my ears searched desperately for the word “savasana” in the jumble of Max’s words. I finally heard it, lay down and I fell asleep instantly. I guess traveling is catching up with me. IMore yoga needed.