First weekend alone in beautiful Italia. Hit a great workout with the Darsena peeps in the morning and then off I went to explore the city on a sunny Saturday noon! It was a good exercise for my willpower to be able to walk through the Navigli area with all the cafes, gelaterias and pizzerias on every step of the way and to keep walking! I followed the advice of my friend, Sasha, and ended up in the beautiful canal with the Christmas market – again trying to ignore the little red devil whispering in my ear “Try the canoli, try the cheese, the candies, try everything!”. It is easy to get in ‘vacation mood’ while traveling and I cannot afford to give in to all the temptation. I’ve been working my butt of to get back to where I was one month ago in terms of my strength and stamina at the box, it will take more than a damn canoli, hehe!
What I did try and it was absolutely de-li-ci-ous was some meatballs and kebab at the best (or so they claim) street food bio-butchery in Milan the Macellaria Popolare. You can get your bites on the spot with a glass of wine or buy ready-to-cook skewers, meatballs and meat to make at home. This little shop was full of Italians enjoying a quick (or not so quick) bite with a glass of wine, a break from their Christmas shopping, chatting away and relaxing. I followed the locals’ advice and don’ t regret it one bit! I even got me some lamb and beef burgers to make at home 😉
I am so happy I finally got my iPhone (which was being repaired in NL) and an Italian sim card, which means I have internet everywhere I go, access to all maps and apps and of course, my music! I walked around Milan for a few hours, with a silly smile on my face, smiling at passers-by without a particular reason, and listening to my favorite song of the past few days ‘Il solito Italiano’. Really, I have no idea what the lyrics are about – well, some lonely Italian, maybe? – but the tune is so cheerful, I was listening to it on repeat, humming along and doing a little dance of my own while waiting for the metro – you know, just moving the head and tips of my toes 😀
Where do I start from? The food, the fashion, the wine, the smells or the beautiful men and women? Every turn I took there was something to capture my senses, be it the smell of pizza, a historic monument, a window shop, the smell of freshly brewed coffee or the perfume of a handsome guy on the street – or just their looks! Man, this city is full of temptation! I better stay alert or I may end up staying here and giving in! We only live once, right?
And since we only live once, why not make the most out of each day and night? Saturday night in Milan was a nice change in my otherwise going-to-bed-early routine. Even more I enjoyed the interaction with the guys and galls from CFD whom I asked for suggestions as to where to have a glass of wine and… boy, was it an interesting conversation! Good thing I googled some of the places the guys suggested otherwise I would’ve ended up in a strip bar of some sort – not that I’d mind, hehe, but definitely not to go alone and not on my first night out in Milan. Thankfully, some were more down to earth and gave me great advice. I walked quite a while through the city to get from one place to the other, but I loved the quiet time and decorated streets. I have this great app on my iPhone (for of World) which starts with a world map all in fog and the more you visit places the more fog you clear. So, you understand it was essential for me to get my phone back soon, to keep clearing fog! Now that I have it again, I don’t mind letting myself be ‘lost’ in the town as there’s always more fog to be cleared!
The first wine-bar I wanted to go to ‘Dry‘ was a no-go. Although I understand you probably need a reservation for dinner on a Saturday evening, I only wanted to have a glass of Italian wine at the bar (which was empty btw) and the lovely lady at the door said I should wait outside in the cold for 20’. Really? I mean, REALLY? Oh well, it wasn’t meant to be I guess so I went on to ‘N’ombra de vin‘ another wine-bar suggested by my friend Sissi. Thankfully, they let me in!
I have to say I am not that used to going out alone and having drinks at bars, but I felt I needed to do this and to push myself to get out of the house a bit, see things outside the box 🙂 I guess you get used to it, or so they say. I remember having the same issue with going out for a coffee alone when I first went to the Netherlands, but I soon found pleasure in spending time alone in a cafe with a book or just people-watching. Well, bars are a bit different, I know, but I survived! So, after Brera (the poshy location I was at) I walked down to Navigli, another part of the town I was told was perfect for a glass of wine.
Le Biciclette was a place coach Ludovico (or, to be more precise, Ludovico’s girlfriend) suggested and it was exactly what I was looking for. Cocktails, nice music, cool crowd. Dinner at Le Biciclette is also an option and I think it is worth trying. The atmosphere was very cozy so I, too, can now recommend it 😉
That was about it for my Saturday night out, and it was a lot for one night! It took me over an hour to get back home as there are no trains or metro after midnight, but it was worth it. The tram took through other parts of the town (yes, I cleared more fog there!) and I got home just after 1. After all I had a great night and managed to conquer my initial hesitation and saw some of Milano by night although now I think I will need to recover from it for the rest of the Sunday, hehe.
On another note, I had a tough come-back from my idle days in Greece, feeling sore as hell and grumpy due to lack of sleep. Imagine waking up at 3am cause you can’t turn in bed, legs hurt, arms hurt, everything hurts! But I feel I am on the right track again. I get good guidance from the coaches at CrossFit Darsena, both in terms of training and nutrition, so I am optimistic that results will come too!
For now I will go do some more exploring of my neighborhood while jogging and then relax and rest for the rest of my Sunday with some good movies and the burgers I got me yesterday! Maybe it’s time to also start checking the map and make some plans for January? Oh well, piano-piano… 😀
Have a great Sunday!