Friday, February 4, 2011


I got lost today while roaming the streets of Milano trying to make my way to Corso Magenta. I started from Piazza Duomo, the heat of the sun warmly hitting my face, had me mesmerized. It feels like years since I felt sun. The blue skies opening up before me and the lovely shadows cast by the sun, against the buildings before me, was creating a diverse mixture of beautiful pastel colours. It was breathtaking and for a moment I gloated ever so briefly that I was in Italy. I walked through the piazza marvelling at the people, the energy, the smell of spring in the air and I let the sun warm my soul. I reached the other side of Piazza Duomo where Via Torino starts and I made a right but not before snapping a few pictures of the beauty of the colours on my blackberry. I continued right and walked until I saw the Castello in view. I had to basically make my way to Via Dante and make a left. This is the only way I know how to get to Corso Magenta walking. I dared not take the metro today as it was too lovely a day to spend underground. I found Via Dante, my eyes ever so alert at the noises, the smells, the colours. It's as if they have been dormant all of this time. I focused on the trams, they to me seemed to be the only things of surreal colours breaking the grey and beige hues of the buildings. Sometimes you will stumble across a pink building, or a red one, even a pale yellow, but it is rare you will find colours of a vibrant blue, red, green or mustard. I snapped a few photos of the trams. They seemed to be running in full force today. One after the other, they followed each other like a little toy train track operated by batteries and little boy controlling the speed. I found Via Dante and I made a left. I walked along Via Dante until the Piazza degli Affari. This piazza, I believe of internal and external affairs, is always my landmark. In the middle of the Piazza there is a giant middle finger. A Sculpture scuplted by I'm not quite sure who but laid out there in center, plain view, enormously large as if to say "Fuck you" to the entire internal and external affairs. I'm not sure if this is true as I never stopped to ask but from the name of the Piazza and the size of the finger, I sort of put two and two together. The statue has been erect for months now and it is left untouched by graffiti and vandals. Perhaps it is one of the most powerful statements one can make. Vandals alike would say the same thing if they could, Graffiti artists wouldn't dare mark such a prominent and important gesture representative of a sentiment they also share. The blue collar workers and the "borghese" each have their own opinions of who that finger is for, so honestly I have to say it is the one sculpture that can be enjoyed by everyone, all ages, races, social class....It is the universal symbol of basically "Take this, I don't give a damn!" and I like it and today I decided to snap a picture of it. After spending a few minutes staring at the statue and determining at precisely who or what I would say that to and for, I left to walk down to head towards Corso Magenta. I decided to take a different route and exited Piazza Degli Affari on the opposite side of which I entered. I found a small street, and turned left. It's a street I had been down before but I don't remember how I found it and surely not via the Piazza with the Finger. I had found it via Via Torino when I was looking for a theater. I continued to follow the narrow cobblestone alleyway down to the end. The end intersected with Cinque Vie which means 5 ways and literally means 5 ways. I turned all 5 ways determing which 1 way I would go. I chose the right. For a split second I felt like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. The street on the right was Via Martha and I have to say it is one of my favourite streets in Milano! It is quaint, narrow, quiet and the apartment buildings tower over you and it is simply absolutely lovely. It is a street that is reminiscent of Romantic Italy and it is filled with lovely art galleries that you would not normally see if you are on the main streets. It is a treasure of a street and it must be visited and often. At the end of Via Martha, there is a quiet little cafe/bar that was, at this particular time in the day, filled to the max with Italians having their "pausa". I kept walking, I don't know where I was walking but I suddenly realized I was lost. I got lost. I kept turning down tiny little alleyways and streets all intertwining in between apartment buildings and soon I had no idea which direction I was going in. I was happy. I decided with the sun beaming on me, that today was the day to get lost, to take in the warmth and the beauty of this city as it has long since given me something to marvel about spontaneously. I turned left here, and right here and then before I knew it I was walking towards a group of students/young teens. They were loud, obnoxious and I have to say in all honesty, Italian toddlers are beatiful, children cute, the teenagers are horrible, and the woman worse. Italian teens are mean and it was evident that manners have long since gone out the window for them. I then understood why they become the adults they do. I was nearly run over by a trio of girls who refused to move out of the way to let me pass by them on the right. Then there was a trio of boys who walking along side of me, nearly pushed me into the wall, neither of the boys looking at me, saying excuse me to get by me, or making an effort to move. Instead they waited til I moved and spitting quite often as they passed by me. It wasn't the kind of spitting in disgust that is most prominent in Italian cultures especially by the men. It was the kind of spitting, I am a 12 year old with attitude and I wanted to smack them all over the head with that giant finger. That is where the problem lies, with raising their teens to be the men and woman they are. I stepped out of the way to let them pass and I waited for a second, I then shook my head at them and crossed the street. Not even once did one of the boys look towards me to even realize or notice what they had done. Not that they had done anything in particularly wrong but their lack of manners and courtesy is just wrong. They just don't care and that to me is wrong. I kept walking straight and before I knew it I was at Via Torino but this time staring at the Piazza Duomo from the bottom up. I didn't want to be here and since I was gettting lost today I turned around and re-traced my steps the exact same way I came. It isn't hard to do, retracing your steps. I walked along the tiny cobblestone road until Via Martha, I turned left and straight towards Piazza Degli Affari and this time I kept walking straight until I hit Via Orsole. From Via Orsole I turned right on Via Gorani. I walked down Via Gorani until I reached the end, turning with it's tight curves. At the end of the street where Via Gorani intersects with Via Morigi there was the most quaint trattoria. I believe it is called Trattoria Morigi. I took a mental note of it as I plan on taking my beautiful half there when I prosper! I continued along Via Morigi and I turned left. I don't know where I was. I continued walking until finally seeing a young man duck through a tiny hole of a door of this apartment building (you will see that often, doorways the size of a elf and people must duck to either exit or enter.) and I asked him where Corso Magenta was. He told me right away, "You are making a mistake, it's that way, straight ahead, keep going straight until you see the trams. The big street with the trams is Corso Magenta" and off he rode looking more french then Italian with his beret, round black glasses and petticoat. I couldn't detect where he was from as he spoke Italian well but pronounced his g's silently almost like in Spanish but he did not have a Spanish accent. I figured perhaps it was part of old dialect Milanese because it's rare born and raised Milanese ever leave Milano. This is true of everywhere in this country, where one is born, they most likely will work until they die and then they will die. I followed the cyclists instructions and after a few metres I knew exactly where I was. I followed the street around. If I turned to the left I would make my way to Sant'Ambrogio church but I kept right and there I found in front of me Corso Magents. I turned to my left and headed to Teatro Litto. I entered the cafe of the theater and there I sat to collect my thoughts and write my blog. I have yet to figure out how to put pictures up so that all may see, but when I figure it out, I promise you will be the first to see them! Anita

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