Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Quick Milan Post

I need to get some paid writing done, but I wanted to write a little more about Milan. I am going to cheat and give you the bullet-pointed version. The more detailed posts will come later.

Things I like about Milan
  • Big, old buildings - even though most of the city was flattened in WWII many of the buildings were rebuilt in an authentic style.
  • High-density housing - everyone lives in apartments and the buildings are eclectic and a little stereotypical Italian (laundry hanging out on a line outside the window.)
  • Narrow, cobblestone streets
  • Scooters, bikes, motorcycles and micro-cars - what a great way to get around
  • Attractive women on scooters wearing stilettos.
  • Attractive women on bikes wearing stilettos.
  • COFFEE! Any variety. It is the absolute best.
  • Lots of design.
  • Cool, attractive scooter helmets.
  • Coke and/or Coke Light - the are in these great .33 l cans. Tall, skinny, sexy and both varieties taste WAAAY better than in the US.
  • Really good food - if you are lucky.
  • The Metro - not the cleanest, but really easy to get around (even though we did get lost once.)
  • Mass at the Duomo. I lucked into this one, but there is something about being a Catholic boy (even an admittedly bad one) and going to church at the largest Gothic cathedral in the world. It was impressive all the way around.
  • The Ferrari store - who doesn't like Ferraris?
  • The street sweepers. After the most trash ridden street party night after night, the streets are cleaned by about 8 AM.
  • Anti-government rally at Palazzo del Duomo. The large square in front of the Duomo was crowded with an anti-government rally. It was pretty entertaining - they were selling t-shirts, refreshments, had DJ's and video screens. Italians are crazy.
Things I Don't Like About Milan
  • Solid metal security gates. Every night the shop keepers pull down these solid metal security gates and it makes the streets feel a little like a war zone.
  • Graffiti - it is everywhere. And it's not the kind of cool stuff that takes some time and talent. It's just endless tagging on any vertical surface. 
  • My language barrier - I need to learn some Italian before I go back.
  • Lack of Internet. At least in the apartments we were in.
  • Anxiety about my phone bill. Data transmission is super expensive. I can only imagine what my bill is going to be.
  • Staying out way later than I am used to. I will definitely try to get to bed earlier next time. Those late nights just destroy me for the next day.
  • Eating too little and too far between. I need to eat more regular meals - it made for really long days.
  • Not drinking enough water. Goes hand in hand with the eating issue - good thing I don't drink or I would have been in a world of hurt.
  • Bad food - much easier to find than you would imagine. And not just because it's not "American Italian" it would be considered bad food here, too.
  • Difficulty finding cabs - it was really hit and miss.
  • The Italian propensity to litter. The streets were a mess with beer bottles and crap during the crazy street parties. It was kind of disgusting.
There is the down and dirty list of what I liked and what I didn't in Milan.


Charisa said...

Italian Coffee - AWESOME. Dirty, graffiti, etc. Yuck. I would add I do not like how they eat dinner at 9pm. Too late!!

t-odd said...

Charisa - "Si" about dinner - in my previous post I talked about not eating until 10 one night and MIDNIGHT the next. 9:00 dinner would have been a treat! Way too late.

Natalie said...

Your coffee pic reminds me of a great little joint in St. Paul called Kopplins. It's off of Hamline and Randolph. It's by far the best coffee I've tasted in the Twin Cities! The top of their coffee has the decorative swirling in your picture.

Milan sounds like a fun place to visit - but not to live.