Monday, January 16, 2012

Favorite places...Italy.

Another work trip afforded me the opportunity to visit Italy a few years back. Fortunately, my boss and I tacked a couple days onto each end of the trip. We flew into Rome and, for 2 days, saw as much as you could imagine without creating any international incidents.
The Vatican
Not sure if I will ever contribute to the second collection after visiting the Vatican. Overwhelming is about the only word that comes to mind. I better never hear the church cry poor again. What I found interesting and, at the same time unfortunate, is the fact that marble to build the Vatican was taken from the Colosseum. This, in part, explains the ruined look of the Colosseum.
La Pieta
Certain places had some serious restrictions regarding photography. I'm sure this was to protect the integrity of ageless treasures however, you wonder if this might also be to force you to purchase a picture of anything you wanted to truly remember. Being typical Americans, my boss and I snuck pictures of the Sistine Chapel. To be honest, I was really surprised as I thought The Creation of Adam fresco, by Michelangelo, was much larger however, it is surprisingly small.
The Creation of Adam - Sistine Chapel
Sistine Chapel - expanded view
After a whirlwind run through Rome, we took the train up to Venice, the site of our work meeting. Now, I'm sure Venice is a beautiful place however, this is one of those places you need to see in season and not in the dead of their winter. It was cold and, for the most part, everything looked really run down. Don't get me wrong, Venice is an amazing city but I believe you need to sunshine and life of the crowds to truly appreciate all that she has to offer.
One of the many "streets" of Venice
Sadly, our time in Venice was mostly spent in meetings and the highlight of each day was the new restaurants that we would visit each night. Aside from its canals, gondolas and Murano glass, Venice is world renowned for its lace. I happened down a side alley to a small shop run by a father and son. Here, I purchased an exquisite table cloth and napkin set for my wife. I humorously refer to this purchase as my kids college fund...I still haven't told her how much it cost :) - After a few days in Venice, my boss and I split for a brief stop in Florence before heading back to Rome for the return flight.
Michelangelo's David
The photo above took a lot of work as security really didn't want photos taken anywhere within this facility. Needless to say, getting the picture was as much fun as seeing the sculpture. Florence had the best food of the trip. Imagine being in a place where you likely could not go wrong with any place you choose for a meal. Our first night's dinner was so good that we returned to the same place the next evening. It was there that I had a Caprese salad, by which all others will be judged. Italy was one of the few places I have travelled where I hope I am fortunate to return with my wife so that I can share some of the food and sights that are hard to capture in word of photo.

No comments:

Post a Comment