Finding somewhere to live has without a doubt been one of the biggest challenges so far. It had been about 2 weeks since the whole scam debacle and flat after flat fell through. My immediate thought was to go for the flat I’d so quickly dismissed due to price in the beginning. A flat in San Frediano, south of the river which a previous British Council assistant had stayed in and told me about. It seemed lovely so I got in touch with the landlady. She said she’d get in touch by the end of the week to let me know and a few days later the news came that it was going to someone else. Another knock back. Then was a great one came up on subito.it which was close to the school. A friend in Florence checked out for me and it was perfect… but it went to someone else for a longer rent. It felt a bit like I was just being punched in the face over and over again. I was losing the will.
I knew I’d have to compromise. Either on price or my strong desire for a double bed or perhaps location. Even compromise didn’t seem to help in my search, however. There were a few places which seemed alright but they were such a distance or had those tiny single beds in the corner of big, dark empty rooms/ dungeons. It felt like the flat search was ruining my year abroad- instead of getting smiley and excited about it I was just stressing and getting upset. It got to the end of another week and my optimism had pretty much all gone. I was going out to drinks and, as I told everyone that I was really struggling with somewhere to live a friend suggested ‘sleeping on the steps of the duomo would give a great view and good location’, ‘yeah, great way to meet people too’ another added. If worst came to worst maybe this was an option, making friends with the beggars…I could say I’d immersed myself in Florentine street culture, well it was that or staying in a hostel for a bit. But lo and behold, that evening I had an email. It was the landlady of the flat in San Frediano! The flat had become available! I let out a small, manly scream of excitement and quickly emailed back asking how I could secure it. Although my Italian was a bit clouded by G&Ts she seemed to understand and the next day we skyped to get everything confirmed. I finally have somewhere to live. 30 minutes from school, 15 from the station and 15 from the Ponte Vecchio. There are views of the Duomo from the balcony, a double bed, bathroom to myself, sharing with one other person for a bit and the rent won’t break the bank! I can finally start getting excited. Phew.