Final Week Milan:

A week without work, a week without some of the simple joys of routine, this week… enthusiastically preparing for my departure, a return to uncertainty, discovery, personal self discovery. A return to travel! Not knowing where or when I’ll be somewhere until the day before. Walking the city, speaking to locals searching for the perfect hostel or hotel, dropping your bags and heading out into the city. Exploring the main square, then the cathedral. There’s nothing that can compare to the simple beauty and experience of traveling on impulse, exploring based on whim and desire. What a joy.
Monday –
Monday: A sad day by all accounts. My final day at the consulate as an employee of the United States Government. I packed up my office, mailed the last of my clothes and awards and prepared for my departure. My Coworkers, Colleagues, and friends prepared a farewell party for me, with a toast, ice cream cake and champagne. We said our farewells and I finished my final assignment for the consulate. I packed up, finished my checkout papers, and headed to Post 1. Turning in my badge and leaving the American Bubble inside the consulate I headed back out into Milan to prepare myself both mentally and physically for the journey ahead.
Monday night I packed, wrote, and spent the evening with good friends and Gabri.

Tuesday. Woken up, 7 Am. Work may be done but no one told my alarm. Shut it off, stumble to the shower. There’s a nag at the back of my mind. Biting, screaming. I finally listen… No work today – why am I out of bed? I stumble back wet and half dried. Plop down in the bed and snuggle under my pillow. The first time I’ve slept-in in the last three weeks. Beautiful, joyous, triumphant.
I wake up again. Finish some of my final packing and work on my paper. Cook a quick lunch of salami (cubed) with spaghetti, funghi, and pomodori. Scarf it down and its time to head out to pick up my parents. Off I go to Linate, grab a café lungo while waiting and find a comfy spot against a pillar. Mom and Dad arrive and I rush to meet them and give them a warm welcome to a northern city. We hop on the bus, (the wrong bus I might add) at my direction and head to Milan. Realizing my mistake we jump off and grab the right bus, adding another half an hour to our journey and allowing time for us to catch up on the long ride into the heart of Milan.

We stop at San Babila and hop off, then take the metro to Centrale to find their hotel. Once checked in, bags down and heads rested we rush off to the Navigli for a Milanese Appertivo. Wonderful food, and some darn strong drinks and we’re back on track to return to the hotel. I drop mum and pa off and head back home.
Get home and finish up the final draft of the SGS 494 Independent internship. Then head to sleep.
Wednesday: its up again bright and early. We head to the Duomo, see the intricate use of faith to control humanity for the benefit for a select few of dessicated corrupt seeking monuments in their name. Epitomized by the mummified body of a “saint” preserved in silver clothes and a gold facemask in a silver, glass and marble sarcophagai as though his personal greed and utmost self service to ensure that he was seen and remembered by all was a merit to god. The unbelievable expenditure of money on the edifice was startling and beautiful, perhaps the only positive creation of that system of control.
After the tour we hiked to the roof and looked out over Milano. Hundreds of photo’s later we continued on toward Cattolica University. We stopped at San Ambrogio and met Gabri for lunch and a Café. Then we headed inside and saw the grounds of the University – beautiful in more ways then one!
After Cattolica we headed to the Museum of science and Technology – inside are exhibits from Leonardo Da vinci’s journals and models built from his drawings. Exhausted by a day of walking and exploring we retired to the hotel for a quick rest and then headed to my apartment. Mom and dad met the roomies and they cooked us a magnificent dinner. I took mom and dad to the Metro and headed home for the night.
Thursday: Woke up again bright and early, saw Castello Szforsesco and Parco Sempione. Then headed through the Triennale Deisgn Museum. The exhibits on industrial design and lasting production were amazing. The crowd wasn’t half bad either… remind me to take design classes *wink*.

We had a meeting then with Mr. M. Kidwell and he advised us on our travels and showed mum and pa the consulate. After we split up and I returned home to a farewell party thrown by my roommates.
Friday Morning: woke up and decided and ran off to Bergamo for the day.