Tuesday, May 20, 2008

due americani, per favore

so this is home, sweet home, although in this photo, it looks like part of a refugee camp.

ej hunkers down to the warm glow of his computer.

his first real day of rehearsal, ej sets up shop.

laura looks disgusted with javi.

javi snarls back at laura.

and gaby does cartwheels. sometimes, gaby has a lot of energy. and by "sometimes" i mean constantly.

one evening, ej and i were in the city walking around when we suddenly hit a glut of milanos. for some reason, they were crowded into this one spot between two restaurants, chatting, drinking, enjoying the warm evening. were they all waiting for a table? was this the place to be seen?

all the scooters belonging to all the milanos.

we had all of saturday free, so ej and i went into the city to see about "the last supper", but first things first. we stop for gelato. this is the dark chocolate variety at a gelateria called "chocolate". it was good.

very, very good.

there are dogs everywhere. this one was hoping someone would drop a scoop of the precious gelato.

on the way to "the last supper", there were many beautiful buildings. i fell in love with this window.

we learned that there were no time slots available to see the great work of art that whole weekend. laura has been calling to make a reservation ever since i got to milano, but all she gets is a busy signal. this is right after we were rejected. there would be no da vinci for us that day.

since we couldn't see the inside, here is the outside of the building.

we strolled on over to the duomo. before going in, i was distracted by all the tourists and their photo-taking.

it's funny to me that many of us, as tourists, want to remember our journeys with a photograph of ourselves in front of the destination, but we stand there expressionless.

or we're persuaded by pigeon food sellers that it would be a lot of fun to have the flying rodents sit on our heads and leave who-knows-what in our hair and flap their wings in our faces for the camera.

"look at the wacky time i had at the duomo", he's thinking. at least, he's smiling this time.

before we ventured in, i had a sudden urge to find the bakery that sells the best canoncini in the city. ej had never tried one and i wanted to take some back to the loft for the others. i knew it was near the duomo, so we went in search. i was so happy to find it! when it came time to order, i didn't know how to say "twelve", so it was back to my usual Charades in Italy. the bakery lady wrapped the dozen so beautifully and efficiently, that i didn't want to open it there on the street. i went back into the bakery to buy one more canoncini for ej. the bakery lady didn't charge me. i love that place. this is just as ej swallowed his first taste of bakery perfection.

and then we entered the duomo. it is so vast and the ceilings so high, that the pillars made me feel as if i were a hobbit in a giant redwood forest.

this is the altar area. the photo makes it look like there's a lot more light available than there actually is.

i don't know who this is or why he's depicted with such anatomical detail, but i had to capture him.

a tiny portion of the massive stained glass window behind the altar.

there are so many details everywhere, i know i only absorbed a small portion of what i saw.

downstairs is the crypt of san carlos.

his was much fancier than san ambrogio's.

i'm not sure what this area is used for, but the ceiling was impressive and i could picture hooded monks gathered for solemn chanting here. at night. by candlelight.

this is not the first time i've seen confessions in action. i love that the priest just sits there in the confessional with a spotlight on him, while he looks out at the churchgoing passersby and waits for a repentant sinner. i wanted a photo of the priest before the confession began, but he was just looking out. there was no place to hide from the eyes of the church while taking an undercover photo. i had to wait until he was occupied.

back out in the world, we replenish supplies at the supermarket. they provide plastic gloves for all handling of produce. you also have to weigh and label each bag of produce with the correct price. i think this is fun.

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