Sunday, June 11, 2017

Milan (again)

If you're keeping track this should be my fourth trip to Milan so far this tour, and probably it will be my last (though you never know with TDYs).  I visited Expo, toured the Duomo and saw the Galleria, eaten aperitivos all over town, and had a great walking tour of all the fancy modern architecture.  This time I didn't do a lot of touristing but I made it a priority to at least hit the art museum.

The Pinacoteca di Brera is Milan's most famous art museum and it was really lovely. I saw works by Raphael (this time around I wasn't a huge fan), Modigliani, Picasso, Caravaggio and plenty of other artists whose works I was familiar with, even if I couldn't name them directly.  I'm getting familiar enough with their styles now that I even recognized the Caravaggio as one of his works from a room away. I guess that's how you know you're ready to PCS.

Some of my favorites were:


It looks SO MUCH like she's texting in this painting - and do you notice the painting on the wall?


Turns out the collection has this one too! The Kiss, by Hayez. Zoom in to see how amazingly real the fabric appears.


Severini - I think this was my favorite in the museum. I'm really starting to enjoy modern art. Must be the influence of all that modern architecture.


Reminds me of one of my favorite artists, Miguel Covarrubias


The Modigliani


Many of the works were on a truly massive scale and as they were originally commissioned for churches.  This also meant that the subjext matter here tended very heavily (except in the modern art section) to religious subject matter.


And of course, our old favorite, St. Sebastian. This time in Venice!






Sunday, June 4, 2017

Miscellany

Las weekend some friends and I hit up Esquilino market (near Termini train station) and a newer food market inside the train station itself.  Both were a lot of fun and I can recommend Esquilino particularly if there's a specific food you've been unable to find elsewhere. A friend was particularly excited to find Paneer and I got some great sun dried apple chips for snacking.


We also discovered the food below: agretti. They look like grass but taste like greens (kind of like chard if I had to be more specific) and were easy to cook.  Just boil a few minutes and toss with olive oil and lemon juice et voila! 


Here's how they look once prepared. Absolutely delicious!


And some random flower shots, just because it's the season.





Bagnoreggio

If you're in the general vicinity of Rome or Florence, have a car, and want a quick day trip then this little gem should certainly be on your list. (Discerning readers will remember that I actually don't have a car anymore (I sold it in Lagos) but I do have friends with wheels and that's even better.)

Bagnoreggio is actually a two-part town with the new section full of parking, gas stations, and general tourist infrastructure, while the old town is a tiny group of homes and businesses perched on top of a rock formation presumably for safety. Full disclosure - I did not read up on the history of Bagnoreggio before or after visiting so I'm going on educated guesses here.



Needless to say, as with every single square inch of Italy, it has been discovered, but if you time it right and avoid a holiday weekend the crowds shouldn't be too bad. Just avoid the height of summer and be aware that the town isn't handicap accessible.






There are really just a few places to go in town, so plan to take a slow spin around to see all the views and cobbled streets, grab a meal - if you can grab a table! - and check out the souvenir shops.  Be warned, there aren't enough bathrooms to go around so make sure to use the restroom whenever you purchase food or drinks.