Wednesday, June 22, 2011: Milan – Italy at last!!!

Today is the day I have been eagerly anticipating…the day we FINALLY enter Italy! We checked out of our hotel, toured downtown Zurich for a bit, had some lunch at a Turkish (?) café (the food was quite good here), bought some (delicious yet expensive) chocolate, and eventually headed for Italy. Our first stop: Milan! Milan, like Zurich, is not cheap. We found a hotel just on the edge of the city…probably similar to a Holiday Inn in the US. The boys’ room reeked of perfume-scented cigarette smoke…ours was not quite so bad. However, it was a deal cost-wise, and we were there for only one night…all very doable. In the end it was an especially good deal because they extended our check-out time to 2PM, which gave us a chance to tour downtown Milan’s famous ‘Il Duomo’ and have lunch before heading to Verona. And an even more important reason: I was able to leave the [delicious yet expensive] Swiss chocolate in our room so it would not sit in a hot car and melt…

We took the tram into the heart of the city to visit ‘Il Duomo’. A wonderful Italian lady saw us reading our maps and (in Italian) suggested places we should visit. I didn’t have the heart to tell her we only had time for the church, but I did take advantage of the opportunity to practice the months of Italian lessons I have invested in for this trip. I was pleased that I was able to understand most of what she was saying (she was kind and spoke slowly).

The church was indeed impressive and well worth the time into town! We were not able to visit ‘The Last Supper’ because reservations are necessary and book up well in advance. This will have to be saved for a future visit…Guess we will have to come back to see that and take in an opera at the world-famous La Scala; perhaps even add in a shopping trip to top things off… J

***The ‘Hindsight is 20/20’ Thought of the Day: It’s never a good idea to face a tram head-on in Milan (in reference to my husband turning right into the path of an on-coming tram as we searched for our hotel upon arriving in Milan…)

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