Livorno has a gruff sort of nostalgia to it... I wouldn't venture to call it ugly, but it's certainly not the postcard-variety seaside town, and maybe that's why I enjoyed it so much. Everything is faded and sun-bleached. As we strolled down the lungomare, the kitschy gelato stands and carnival games were both charming and somewhat foreboding. Admittedly I'm used to the bustle of Florence, but I also couldn't help but notice how still the city seemed in the dead of the afternoon. It was almost as though we had stopped by on a day where half the population was taking a nap. Maybe it has something to do with the heat. After going for a swim, I could have easily stayed on that little shore below Terrazza Mascagni, letting the hum of the traffic and the waves intermingle and lull me to sleep.