Touring Milan Day 1

Saturday we awoke later than expected, and made our way downstairs for breakfast. After, we began our day of sightseeing at the Archaeological Museum, which was far more expansive than we could’ve expected for €5. The museum backs up to 3rd century towers and ruins of a former barrier wall and cloister, which includes the still active Chiesa di San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore.

From there we followed our poorly drawn English-map until we gave up, resorting to Google maps once again. It’s rarely failed me. We headed to the Sforza Castle and all the many museums within. Arriving two hours before close, we noticed a sign in the ticketing line indicating that entry was free an hour before close at 17:30 (if you choose to do this, still get your free ticket from the office).

We grabbed an enjoyable lunch from the café within the center of the castle, wandered the carnival behind it for a bit, then returned for free entry to the furniture and Egyptian museums. They were certainly interesting and well laid out, though, as is frequently true in Europe, expect some stairs, many stairs.

The American adversity to depictions of death or presence of actual skeletons seems very far from the sentiment in Italy, as was clear through the open showing of unwrapped mummies at the museum, as well as the dressed Skeletons of St. Abrogio in the Basilica di Sant’Ambrogio, and the walls decorated with skulls and femur bones in the chapel at the Sanctuary of San Bernardino Alle Ossa.

After leaving the castle’s museums we wandered through the adjacent park a bit, taking in the Arco Della Pace, and eventually found ourselves back on track to the hotel. We stopped at a couple shops in search of a power adapter, but alas, came up empty-handed (we both have usb-europe adapters, but not one for the laptop: my excuse for delayed blogging). This was, strangely, the first time we encountered anyone who did not speak any English, something I struggle with my feelings of. While I am more than grateful to be able to move through foreign countries with relative ease using my native language, it is a shame how easy it is to be an English-only speaker, and never have any sense of real motivation-by-necessity to learn another. We’ve got the basics down, but outside of “Ciao!”, “per duo”, “scusa”, “buongiorno”, “buonanotte” “per favore” and “grazi” our speech and comprehension is very limited. We’ll see if Poland is as easy to maneuver po angielsku!

 

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