February 11, 2013

Milano, Domenica 3 Febbraio

We had one night in Milano, which didn't seem like a lot of time, but it was enough to get a feel for the city and see some sights. This is good, because we still have plenty to see and do when we go back.
This train was one of two that passed us by that morning. Check out the snow-covered mountains in the background!
We were lucky to stay with a friend outside of Milan. She took us to Monza the night before where we saw the duomo and had a delicious dinner of appetizers.  The next  morning, we woke up early, had our coffee and headed for the train station where we waited, and waited for the train to take us into the city. I was getting a little stressed. We had 11:00 reservations to see the Leonardo Da Vinci's Last Supper at the Convent of Santa Maria della Grazie. We arrived in Milan at 10:46, then decided to get in a cab to make our appointment. We made it to the convent with only 2 minutes to spare. We even had our luggage with us inside the refectory. Serendipitously, a few nights before, Jon and I had watched a BBC video about the Last Supper. I was glad of that event when I realized we only had 15 minutes to be in the same room of this fragile mural. I was able to take in the sight, knowing the history and mystery of the mural, and was even able to make out little details that I might not have known about. It was awe-inspiring to see Da Vinci's work in person, and it was amazing that we made it to Santa Maria della Grazie on time. Whew!
View of the church of Santa Maria della Grazie. No photos inside the refectory,
but if you're curious... it looked like this,
After dropping our bags at the Central Station in Milan, we headed over to the other *must not miss* site of Milan  - the Duomo di Milano.
It's actually the Duomo de DKNY.  Just kidding!
The Duomo de Milano is known for the roof top sculptures and view. So despite my fear of heights, I ventured to the top.
I think it was €6 to climb to the top. I can't remember, but it was worth it!
Jon said, "It's like a forest of sculptures!" He was in heaven. I'm sure his pictures are amazing.

The view from the top. It's not so bad.

Our beautiful friend, Jimena.

The top was amazing with a spot to sit, sun yourself and take in the view. I took a cool photo, that I would like to turn into a painting. It had been so long since the sun had actually warmed my face, and I loved wearing my sunglasses! It seemed like ages since I had them on.
After the Duomo, we walked over to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, the oldest shopping mall in Italy. Can you see why two architects wanted to visit it? It wasn't for the shopping, but it is a lovely space.

After a quick bite to eat, we went to La Triennale di Milano, a design museum in Milan. We were running out of time before we caught our train to Firenze, so we went headed back through the Parco Sempione, the park grounds adjacent to Castello Sforzesco. Milano was very nice!
caffè per tre
[coffee for three]
I am so thankful for the company of our friend, the nice weather and the appointment that we barely made to see the Last Supper. That would have been a tragedy, but this Italian story has a happy ending.
I know we are smiling, but we were so stressed when we took this picture in the cab to Santa Maria della Grazie.

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