Mr B and I were in Florence. We had gone for the week to buy hand cream.
Yes. You read that right.
By now you know that I am
slightly mad and so to me it is perfectly reasonable to go away for a week to Italy in pursuit of hand cream.
I had been given a pot of this stuff by a friend who had just come back from Venice. Knowing my love of hand creams she knew I would love it. I don’t think she expected me to want to get on a plane in the pursuit of more.
I decided I wanted more of it and that it would be a good excuse to go to New York, another place it is stocked (along with Paris, Tokyo and Miami. Oh and London but that’s boring). I have never been to New York and it seemed like a perfect excuse to go.
As I was thinking this New York had a massive snow fall and temperatures dropped almost off the “acceptable for humans” scale and Mr B said “no”.
Hmm. “How about Florence?” Said Mr B seeing me pouting. This is the home of the pharmacy that makes the hand cream, lets go there rather than just a stockist.
The Santa Maria Novella is said to be the oldest pharmacy in the world. Established in 1221 by the Dominicans “Santa Maria Fra Le Vigne” (Santa Maria inside vineyard) who moved to Florence, they produced medicines by compounding home grown herbs. In 1612 when news of the quality of the products produced by the pharmacy reached the outside world, it was decided to open to the public and to be honest the sales room has not changed much in all those years.
I didn’t need telling twice.
And so it came to pass that we spent days wandering piazzas, gazing at art work in the Uffizi and Duomo, drinking coffee and wandering over the Ponte Vecchio.
Oh yeah, and buying hand cream. Eight pots of it. And I still have two left. The one in the photo above smells just as amazing today as it did back then. And it truly is the best hand cream ever.
Then on the final night over dinner Mr B suddenly gave me this:
Yep, so nutty that I still have that “napkin ring” six years later. Even though it has now been replaced by a beautiful diamond that Mr B chose in Hatton Garden, to go with a setting that I chose. And accompanied by a wedding ring three years ago.
So if you ever think about doing something nutty. Do it. Who knows where it might end up?