Milan, Italy and Bad Luck.

Did we walk under a ladder?  Pass by a black cat?  Open an umbrella indoors?  Break a mirror?

Honestly, probably all of the above and then some with all the bad luck we had on our trip to Milan this past weekend.  But no matter: we made the most of our time despite the trials and tribulations we encountered and ended up having an amazing trip!

The History
Minorka, Carolina, and I had been talking about going to Italy for awhile, and since plane tickets to Milan were the cheapest, we went for it!  But I tell ya, trying to coordinate flight times/prices with 3 people was a struggle and half.  That’s where the bad luck all started…once we were finally able to agree on a ticket, Caro and I couldn’t purchase them due to some computer glitch.  Thank goodness Minorka was able to get them for us!

The AirBnb
Our place was gorgeous.  It was a cute little apartment in the Navigli district of Milan where there were several restaurants and bars.  It was about a 25 minute walk from the center of the city, which wasn’t too bad.  Basically, the apartment was the poster child for IKEA from the chairs to the couch to the cups, but it was perfect for what we needed, and the shower was dope.  Plus, our host was super friendly, gave us recommendations for places to eat, and even left us a bottle of wine as a welcome gift!

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AirBnb welcome board!

The Sights
With only a few days in Milan, we had to pack a lot in!  The absolute best part was the Duomo di Milano, aka the Milan cathedral.  It was stunning!  The towering building had so many intricate details, both inside and out, which were very impressive.  We even got to go onto the terraces on top of the cathedral to get some amazing views and get a closer look at the architecture.  So beautiful!

We also went to 2 museums: Museo del Duomo and the Museo del Novecento.  The former had many sculptures and replicas of various aspects of the Duomo, while the latter was an art museum with contemporary pieces.  Both were interesting and neat to visit.

Another place we saw was the Castillo Sforzesco, which was this cool little castle.  While we didn’t go into any museums that were there, we did walk through it and even encountered a Christmas market while there.  It was pretty neat.

Besides that, we walked around in the center a bunch and checked out the high-end shops, from which we bought nothing because we spent all our money on food and gelato instead.

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Milan Duomo

The Food
Speaking of food…the irony of this trip is that we were in Italy and were hungry the entire time.  How does that even happen?  Surrounded by pizza and pasta and gelato, yet still hungry?  Well, first, Italians don’t believe in “breakfast.”  Breakfast to them is a croissant and coffee.  (But where are the eggs?  Where are the pancakes?)  Also, with our schedule of sightseeing, we weren’t always able to eat at the “normal” times.  But Italian restaurants are closed from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm, so if you’re hungry during that time?  Sorry.

But when we did eat, here are some of the things we had:

  • Pasta. Twice. I ate ravioli once and tortellini once.  Both were pretty good, but nothing spectacular.  I think I came with too high of expectations, lol.
  • Pizza.  This pizza from Pizzeria Gino Sorbillo was huge but by golly, we ate the whole thing. It was recommended by our host, and though we waited 2 hours for it, it was worth it.
  • Gelato.  I ate some every day, and we were there for 3 days, lolz.
  • Panzerotti.  This little calzone was such a nice snack on a cold day, but again, we had to wait in a line.
  • Beer.  We went to a bar near our AirBnb one night called La Fontanella where they serve you beer in quirky containers!  We chose a 3 liter giant tube…and drank the entire thing.

Okay, so I realize it doesn’t sound like we were ever hungry, but just tell that to the girls that scoured the pantry and fridge of the AirBnb and thought the corn flakes we found were heaven on Earth.

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The Bad Luck
Oh boy.  Even though these were all very minor issues, the fact that they all happened on one trip was very frustrating.  However, we kept positive attitudes the entire time and thankfully made it through!

  • Before we even left, Minorka had no water in her apartment because they were doing some repairs or something, so that was a great way to start off the trip.
  • We missed 2 buses from the airport to the city center when we landed because they were full and we weren’t aggressive enough to get on.  This meant we spent extra time in the cold. We also waited for 20 minutes and missed a tram once because we didn’t know you needed to buy tickets beforehand.  Then we ended up buying a 2 day tram pass and rode the tram a total of 2 times…smh.
  • Speaking of cold, it was cold in Milan.  We were not expecting it to be so bitter, but it was!  And with as much time as we spent outside, it was not pleasant.
  • Caro brought the wrong charging adapter for her phone; instead of the Europe adapter, she brought the China one ­čśé.
  • Caro got locked into a bathroom in the Novacento museum.  She also got shut into the tram doors one day because it was so crowded.
  • We waited for 2 hours for our pizza; we were told it was a one hour wait, so we walked around for a bit and came back 15 minutes early only to find that they had started calling people that were after us on the list.  By the time we got our food, it had been 2 hours, for freaking pizza.
  • The terrace at the Duomo was always closed because of ice, and nobody ever knew when it would open.  If we had a euro for every time someone told us, “It should be open in an hour…” we’d be rich.  Luckily we finally got to see it, but we wasted a lot of time waiting for it to open.
  • We tried to see the painting, The Last Supper, but the museum was sold out of tickets.
  • This one takes the cake: we were never allowed to eat gelato.  At one place, we sat at a table and the waiter asked us our order.  We told him, but he started explaining something to us in Italian, which of course we didn’t understand.  Then he found out Caro and Minorka speak Spanish, so he started explaining it in Spanish.  Except the girls had no idea what he said and we ended up even more confused.  So Caro and I went to the counter to ask if the waiter had actually taken our order or not.  But the girl at the counter didn’t speak English, so she called over a coworker.  We tried asking him, but he didn’t understand and called over another coworker.  So ultimately we had 3 people at the counter helping us, only to find out we were only allowed to eat cones at the table, not cups.  Cups were for the to-go gelato, apparently (???), so we all had to get cones even though Mino and Caro didn’t want that.  At another gelato place, I again wasn’t allowed to eat gelato there, so I sat there patiently while Caro and Mino drank their coffee.  When we left, I ordered my gelato but stumbled over the word stracciatella when ordering.  And you know what?  That a** hat of a gelato scooper wouldn’t give me the gelato until I could pronounce it correctly.  But did he pronounce it for me to help me out?  Nope.  He laughed at me as I stood there pointing and smiling like and idiot until Mino swooped in with her awesome pronunciation skills so I could actually eat my gelato.  Dear goodness, why is it so complicated?

So again, none of these were huge deals, but one thing after another made us question what was wrong with us.  It was an awesome trip, though, and Mino and Caro were great travel partners!

Also…

  • Time since I’ve been here: Happy 3 month Spainiversary to me today!
  • Time to home: According to my countdown app, 11 days and 13 hours until I board my plane for home.  I can’t wait!
  • I ENTERED A VIDEO CONTEST THOUGH CIEE! The contest was to upload a 1 minute video about your time in your country and the video with the most shares on Facebook gets to invite a friend to visit you FOR FREE! I entered the contest and would be ETERNALLY GRATEFUL if you could share the video (starting Dec. 15) because I really want my sister to come to Spain! So please keep an eye out!! THANK YOU!!!

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