About Me

I am a 45 year husband and dad, currently adjusting to life back in the United States after living in Italy for a little over two years. I love spending time with my family, cycling, model railroading, mosaics and watching TV and movies.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Monza Market and Lugano Switzerland

It was a cool and cloudy day today. After sleeping in, all of us headed into downtown Monza for market day. We had a great time wandering around the market booths. Mom and Katrina bought boots.

I bought parmesan from our favorite cheese vendor. This time he went on and on about how much he loves the United States and Americans. I think we chatted for about 15 minutes about the virtues of America. Then, I told him we wanted our usual 20 euro chunk of parmesan (which is huge and would cost us about $50 or more dollars in Corvallis) and he cut one double the usual size. I thought he misunderstood me, but then he showed me the ticket. He charged me 22 euro for 2.5 kilos of parmesan, which should have cost 40 euro. What a deal. We have a chunk of parmesan that fills almost one shelf of our refridgerator.

Mom and Dad at the market

Mom bought some Italian boots

Katrina and Brandon buy some black olives

We left the market and dropped Katrina off at home. She had a lot to do before she leaves tomorrow night for a business trip.

The rest of us headed to Lugano Switzerland, about an hour and a half drive from our house.

The town of Lugano Switzerland is the leading city of the Italian-Swiss region of Switzerland. With its 53,000 inhabitants, it lies along the shores of Lake Lugano.

We visited the Grand Cafe' al Porto, where secret meetings were held by Giuseppe Mazzini and fellow Italians, to plan their next moves of unifying Italy. It was also the place where the US met with German and Italian representatives to organize a graceful retreat of the Germans from Italy. It is also the cafe where Clark Gable and Sofia Loren ate cookies and drank coffee.

Mom & Dad in Lugano Switzerland

Art in the waterfront park

Swiss Army Cow

We also visited Piazza della Riforma where we found an unexpected surprise, a chocolate festival. We had a great time sampling chocolates from all over Switzerland. We even bought some delicious chocolate.

Chocolate Festival

Brandon's newest obsession, chess.

The Church of San Rocco. It's frescoes celebrate the saint responsible for protecting the city against the plague.

We decided to take a more scenic route home. Instead of taking the Autostrada back towards Como and on towards home, we took a route that took us along Lake Lugano, through the mountains, down to Lake Como. We had to catch a ferry to cross the lake to Bellagio, then on to our house.

Our GPS wanted us to drive on water...which, when translated means, take the ferry.

Riding the ferry from Managgio to Bellagio across Lago di Como.

This evening we relaxed at home and ordered pizzas for dinner. It's been really nice having Mom & Dad here. One more day to go. Tomorrow we will do a little shopping for some gift items Mom & Dad want to take hom.

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