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This message comes to you many many nautical miles away from Luigi-land as we are on a cruise of the North Sea. It’s been written over five days and today I decided to bite the bullet and pay the online access fee to publish…
Anthony Kiedis has surely moved to Copenhagen where he has started a family. Dave and I could not take our eyes off this dopelganger that we saw on a train heading into town today. He was very convincing to the point where I debated going up to ask for an autograph on a piece of paper or body part. Indeed, I am writing to you from a piece at the top of mainland Europe and for the next two weeks, we have left the land where you get a issued a receipt for absolutely every purchase you make, and will be exploring northern Europe via a cruise. Colder weather and orderly lineups-how seriously refreshing.
Since my last entry where we I described us being hit by a scooter, things have been good and incredibly busy. Milan is undoubtedly known for its fashion sense and one night a year there is an event where heaps of shops are open late for our shopping pleasure. Stores put out food, drinks, and some even hire dj’s to blast music from within their shops. It’s essentially a convention of fashion where each store is its own ‘booth’, without using a convention centre and floor. Clearly, delegates are numbered by the heaps of thousands and specific high-fashion shopping areas are pleated and laced with people wanting to get in on the action. I missed this event the first two years we have been living here, but this year I tagged along on a ladies night out with some familiar faces (and met some new ones) to partake in the event. Starting out for drinks at 10 Corso Como, we eventually snaked our way on the underground to the infamous Corso Vittorio Emmanuelle II for more window-shopping. Shops offer previews for what’s in store for the next season but it looked like most people were browsing and taking in the social atmosphere (and free booze), rather than actually purchasing items. Some purses definitely caught my eye, but since I need to adopt another purse like Honey Boo Boo needs another round of Go-Go juice, I joined the masses and let my eyes do the shopping while my credit card hibernated in my wallet.
An old friend from Calgary was coming through Milan for a couple of days and I tried to snag some tickets for a football match that would be taking place between Inter Milano and the team from Rome. Milan has two rivaling teams and the animosity between them is somewhat ridiculous, albeit comical. When friends from Australia and England came through on a visit last March, we took them on a tour of the stadium and it was quite interesting to learn how the two opposing Milanese teams act towards one another especially if they should be together in the stadium. It appears getting tickets here is not as easy as back home for a sports event. Depending what team you want tickets for, only certain venues will sell you tickets and each person wanting to go to the game must be present with government-issued identification for the purchase. This information would have been handy before I stood in line at the counter for some time, only to be rejected because I could not buy a ticket for Paul, since he was not in town yet and hence not with me. The evening of his arrival was the evening of the game and hence we never made it. Apparently you need your identification at the stadium to prove it is you that is on the ticket, but should you not be able to make it to the game and want to sell your ticket to someone else, you need to jump through some cyber-hoops online to do a proper ticket transfer. Italy makes me laugh indeed-they can’t prevent graffiti from being plastered on all their city walls, but scalping tickets for sacred sports events is massively impossible to do. Regardless, now that I know the rules and ways to go, I look forward to attending a game one day soon. Paul enjoyed Milan’s coffee and food and I enjoyed showing yet another friend the splendors of the city I call home now.
Otherwise, September has been dominated by Little Miss Stubborn’s return to school. She is now going five days a week and so that means lots of walking for me. The first week back all three of my tires on my Phil and Ted’s stroller took turns needing repairs on different days, so I’m pretty sure the bike shop owner down the street thinks I am sending him subliminal messages by frequently popping into his shop with yet another tire that needs repair. All are fixed now and the stroller will be ready to roll once we’re home. Little Miss Stubborn is enjoying school and her italian is improving far more than Dave and I suspected. The other day here on the ‘big boat’ (as the kids call it), Dave and I spoke in italian to each other to confirm dinner plans for him and I at the sushi restaurant onboard after we would drop the kids off at the daycare offered on board. Out of curiosity, I asked Little Miss Stubborn if she understood what we said, and she translated back with no issues what Dave and I discussed. She had us in stitches. There are only six children under the age of five onboard, so our guys are getting lots of attention from everyone and in a way, dropping them off at the daycare every evening after their dinner (allowing Dave and I to have a quiet meal together) is excellent practice for the Albino Hulk as he will begin pre-school three mornings a week upon our return to Milan.
I should try to get some sleep as it is late. You’d think that the rocking motion of this boat would easily allow me to drift to sleep, yet it does not. Not gonna lie-when staff onboard comment as to how much the boat has been rocking today and they’ve been aboard the ship for months now, it does make me a wee bit nervous. I just glanced outside our balcony into the frigid waters below and all I could think about is how dreadful the experience aboard the titanic must have really been. Dave gets all giddy to see all the drilling platforms scattered in the north sea as we pass them by-he hasn’t noticed the wobbly boat as much. Our next stop are the Shetland Islands. Very north, very cold, very good. I’m off to read for a bit-I’m thoroughly enjoying The Picture of Dorian Gray on this trip-time to immerse and distract myself in the book as our big boat wobbles to port and sways the tea in my cup, hence the title of this entry from the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I’m having issues uploading photos this time around, so there will be more in the next entry.