Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Italian trip 2017: post #12 -- What I bought in Italy

Summary for this post? How about: What you buy in Italy when you're an Italophile, traveling mainly for the nostalgia, with the sure knowledge that the things you really want to purchase are mainly found at the supermarket, the newsstand, the bancarella of used books under the portico by the church, et al.

Or as I've said before, my favorite souvenirs are my receipts -- a trail of all the good places to eat, drink, read books and browse other wares that I found along the way. And of course, Italian receipts, like everything else in Italy, are slightly different than American receipts. (Printed on a slippery paper stock, and imprinted with the shop logo in a way that you'd like to make a t-shirt from one.)

What's in the picture? Oh the usual:

*Lots of Caffe Kimbo (which actually comes from Naples but which luckily can now be found throughout Italy (and online), yay, thank ya Jesus);
*Italian biscotti because, really, you just have to have what they have; we have not mastered the art of the Italian biscotto, when we're talking about the breakfast cookies they dip in their coffee
*Lots of copies of Bell'Italia magazine;
*Fancy schmancy chocolates from Venchy's outpost at the main Torino train station;
*A copy of Dylan Dog, the seminal Italian fantasy comic, for Il Nostro Inviato, aka Mike, who I think didn't even knew how great a gift it was;

*And, of course, a few new Moka coffee pots from the fantastic Bialetti home store in Torino because really I cannot have enough of them (I have one stashed at my mother's, one stashed at Mike's sister's house, and it's helpful to have a travel model to bring along on trips....you get the picture).

It used to be that one of the best parts of the post-trip ruminations was taking this "group picture" of acquisti (I even wrote about it for Catapult!).

Now it might just be having "someone" model items that you bought! Like a super cool Milano jacket for my super cool Leonardo (Milan is an important city for a guy named Leonardo, after all!).

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Italian trip 2017: photo-a-day #10 Parole italiane

Best of Italy: parole italiane. Italian words. Any Italian words. All Italian words.

In this case, it's a two-fer. A sign commemorating the 150th birthday of the Italian daily La Stampa in Piazza Castello in Torino.

Not my paper, but what of it? I'm a newspaper lover from way back. So I love that this sign marries two sides of my life: the news business and the Italian language business (as it were).

Il Futuro E' Quotidiano. Literally: The future is daily. Bello, proprio bello.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Italian trip 2017: photo-a-day #9 Room with view

My room with a view -- at a friend's house in Florence during my trip to Italy last month.

(Was it really last month, already?)

The view? Well, I see the hills outside of the city in the background and the gorgeous garden of the Four Seasons Hotel in the foreground.

I see orange tiled roofs and greenery. I see Mediterranean sunlight.

I see and hear Italy: the birds chirping, the clatter of utensils as someone sets the table, the distinctive whir of the carabinieri vehicles.

-30-

Saturday, June 03, 2017

Italian trip 2017: photo-a-day #8 ... Caffe + dog

They love their cafes in Turin, they love their coffee and I guess they love their dogs.

Snapped at Caffe Vittorio Veneto two weeks ago, as I embarked on one of my countless early morning marathon strolls.

The Vittorio Veneto is considered one of the city's historic coffee bars. It's also, I note for early risers like myself, one of the few in the Piazza Castello/Via Po area of Torino that opens at 6.

I drink coffee first thing, without exception! So does the signora in the picture -- who also apparently walks the dog first thing.

Cheers!

Friday, June 02, 2017

Italian trip 2017: photo-a-day #7 Hiking Pistoia!


I want to say the highlight of my trip to Italy last month was hiking with my friend, Giovanni! Talking about forest cleansing.

How can that greenery be real? Oh but it is. Where we went -- the mountains outside of Pistoia -- well, I would not be able to re-trace my steps easily but that's the whole point.

Let the Italians take me where they want!


Which Italians? These Italians. These super awesome Italians. Mille grazie Veronica e Giovanni!

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Italian trip 2017: photo-a-day #6 Crazy dry cleaner

Lots of stops when I return to Italy, and most are of a very personal kind of tourism. Like checking to see if "the crazy dry cleaner" is still in business.

Suffice it to say, he is (or at least his business hasn't -- yet -- been replaced by another "snack stop" for tourists).

Phew! For a moment -- I mistook the block -- I thought he'd closed.

He was our dry cleaner when we lived in Florence -- his shop is located just around the corner from our old apartment, near Piazza Santa Croce.