Nom de Plumage

May 17, 2012

All Catwalks Lead To Milan


What does one do when you wake to a cold, wet and miserable morning? That was my dilemma and although the thought had crossed my mind to stay rugged up in bed reading a book, that was never going to be an option. Hostels close their doors for cleaning at 10 am and so with that in mind, I had no choice but to wear warm clothes and brace myself for the soggy delights of Milan.

So where to start? The heart of Milan is a huge piazza that houses two very recognisable buildings and so it is here that I decide to start my three day sojourn of this beautiful city. I exit the underground metro to a sea of colour. Umbrella’s in all colours weave their way through the rain. The first notable building is the ever impressive and stunning Cathedral Duomo. The dirty white stone turrets, rise high to pierce the low heavy grey clouds.  Intricate master craftsmanship is on full display  and  the passion and skill of the many men who created this masterpiece. One of my quests on my travels, is to see as many Cathedrals as I can. Not for any religious pilgrimage, but for the sheer brilliance of the magnificent buildings. Although one can take as many photo’s of the exterior, the interior is off limits to  flashes from a camera. Simply put, any old building is to be preserved for future generations, at all costs. With the onset of human tourists in the millions and all with camera’s, the damage would be significant. Many a time, I wish I could have been one of those sneaky tourists who disobeyed the rules, but a lover of history and historic buildings, I adhered to the rules. So it is left to my weary memory to describe the interior. Unfortunately, it was a gothic stone interior that was cold and dark. So the exterior was the highlight. But still worth seeing.I run across the piazza to the second most recognisable building of the beautiful shopping precinct – Galleria. The massive glass arch invites you into a world of elegance that only the Italian’s seem to know best. I walk upon the tiled floor, past boutique shops and dream of the impossible. My empty wallet never saw the light from my bag, for it could not match the prices that were offered. 

 

 

 

 

I exit the back of Galleria and to my delight, discover a beautiful monument to one of Milan’s adopted sons – Leonardo Da Vinci. A personal favourite of mine also and someone who admires his brilliance in art and science. Across the road, is the small opera house of La Scala. Closed of course, much to my disappointment. So again, I can only speculate on the wonder of this magical place.

I continue walking through the train, past many shops and countless cafes and a park or two. The city is beautiful and I can appreciate the vitality and elegance of this little gem.After walking about in the rain for four hours, my lower legs were drenched and I had started to become tired and irritable. So I went back to my hostel for some lunch and to get dry before I went out again to visit a religious institution.In my household at home, there is a religion and it is soccer/football. More importantly, the team that my brother has supported for over twenty years is AC Milan. So after living everything Milan (by force), I thought it only fitting that I should visit my brother’s ‘church’. Last night I had in fact started to walk to the stadium San Siro, only to turn back half-way. An important game was being played and it was an explosive  testosterone charged atmosphere. I did not feel it wise to walk into such a place as a solo female traveller and when I did start to become uncomfortable, I listened to my gut instinct and turned back. Wise choice! So today I decided to continue the journey and walked out to the stadium. It was closed, but nonetheless a massive and impressive stadium that I was happy to finally see something that my brother is passionate about.

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