Friday, October 31, 2008

Exploring Milan with Amy

I arrived in Milan last night and promptly went out for pizza with Amy to a place right around the corner from her apartment. We came right home and ate it at the table while I got to (finally) meet Rebecca. The pizza was delicious and I’m so excited to be in Italy- seeing Amy’s life here, meeting her friends who have become her family here in Italy and getting to explore a new country.

My first impression after walking around the city for a little bit today is that Milan is definitely not Ireland! The people are not friendly at all. The men are creepy- they stare at you and when you look at them and make eye contact, they keep staring with absolutely no change in their facial expression or attempt to change the direction of their glance. When I’m busted staring at a total stranger I either smile at them sheepishly as if to say “busted” or I look away as quickly as I can pretending I’m obviously looking at something else. But here in Italy, men are just not like that! It’s a little unsettling but not something that catches me completely off-guard either as I've been prepared.

It’s miserable today. It’s raining and raining and raining. And I realize in Ireland this was okay mainly because we spent so much time driving from one place to the next and it didn’t matter much. But here in Milan it’s putting a serious damper in terms of walking around and exploring. Turns out that’s completely fine with both me and Amy who are fine making a few key stops checking out touristy things in Milan before we fled back to her apartment to catch up on good ol’ American TV while hiding out from the horrendous weather.

Today we explored the Duomo and the Galleria. The Duomo is insanely beautiful and impressive. It’s the 3rd largest church in the world and took over 200 years to build.

After looking through the inside of the church, we went back outside and took the stairs up to the top of the Duomo. We had to pay money to climb up nearly 200 steps…which I find funny for some reason. I get that if you can make money off the view, go for it, but it makes me laugh thinking that I paid money to climb up stairs that had me huffing and puffing all the way up (and at one point I thought I’d go bat shit crazy because the stairway was so narrow and circular). Once we reached the top I was overwhelmed by how beautiful it was (and by how annoying this rain was!) and then almost simultaneously caught off guard by how anxious I felt by how high up we were and how tiny everyone below us in the piazza looked. Apparently in my older age I’ve become afraid of heights, which is rad. Amy & I walked around the top of the Duomo a little more, took some obligatory pictures and then made our way down.

When Amy asked me what I wanted to do while visiting her, I said I really didn’t care. She said she’d be up for “whatever my little heart desired.” So I decided to test that theory and let her know I wanted pizza for every meal. When Amy said lunch was going to be something that I’d continue to crave for the rest of my life, and it wasn’t exactly pizza, I was skeptical (and a little scared- in a good way) but up for the challenge. Amy did not disappoint. We went to a place called Luini where we ate Panzerotti- the basic Panzerotti is folded with mozzarella and tomato (sauce) inside. I think it’s some sort of a deep fried crust/bread with all the goodness inside, melted and hot and warms you up right away. Picture a calzone but 100 times better and deep fried. I’ll have to try and sneak in another visit before leaving Milan.

When we left Luini’s we took the long way to the metro and stumbled upon a church. While Amy was telling me a little about it, a flashy, friendly Spaniard turned around to tell us a little more about it. Almost immediately he launched into telling the both of us that we have good aura (Amy- green and orange and me- yellow and blue) and that he’d like to read our palms. He goes on and on about how he’s a hermaphrodite and goes as far as telling Amy that his male name is Sergio but he’s still working on his female name which he’ll need before the operation in two years time. No transition whatsoever, just goes from aura, to hermaphrodite, to wanting to read our palms.

Sergio was captivating, apart from the whole hermaphrodite thing. He looked at me and said that Ireland was meaningful to me and I basically fell under his spell from the beginning. He gave Amy her palm reading first because he thought her hand would be more of a challenge. When he was done with Amy’s reading, he took my hand and said all sorts of things. It was interesting how right on he was about a lot of the things he said to me. The one thing he said that’ll stick with me for a while is that I give away too much bread. He said that if there’s a big piece of bread, I give the biggest piece away to everyone else and leave very little for myself. It’s a metaphor for something that I’m completely aware of and have attempted to work on for the past few years, but it still something I certainly struggle with quite a bit. He also said that there were some cliffs in Ireland that were very meaningful to me. This also struck a chord with me because we had just scattered my Dad’s ashes the week before at the Cliffs of Moher. He also said that I have family walking around Ireland waiting to meet me. (I’ll gladly go back and try to find them!).

Here's the only shot I managed to get of this dood as he was walking away:

It was a very interesting experience and I’m not holding my breath for anything he said, but it was just one more adventure for me and Amy and gave us a lot to laugh about and think over.

We ended the night with a short walk around the corner for more pizza (which I didn’t love) and my first bit of gelato- that was delicious! Tomorrow we’re taking the train to Venice and I’m really looking forward to going.


JR May 25, 2016 at 7:43 AM  

Dear Molly,

I'm sorry to post this in a comment, but I see no other way to get in touch with you... do you have an email address I can use? I need to ask you something.



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