Return to Trieste - WEEK 1

DAY 2 Sunday 22 May

Milan at last

Being over 1 hour late to Milan (Malpensa Airport) we arrived at the same time as other flights, overwhelming Italian Immigration (or perhaps it is always like this - it IS Italy after all). Long lines of people right back to the airplane doors. Immigration gave up and just mechanically stamped our passports without even looking at the photo. But the speed through immigration was in vain. We had arrived safely, and so had our baggage, all carefully laid out in rows in the baggage area. Our buses were there with drivers and couriers ready with luggage trolleys waiting to load the bags, BUT, the local baggage handlers, now a unionised group, complained to the Police about the presence of our drivers and couriers. So the three-way argument went on and on. Yes I am sure MORE money (ie twice the going rate) would have solved it earlier, but they were already being well paid so why pay them a ransom as well? An hour later, agreement was reached and our bags were loaded ready to go. The hotel could not come fast enough for us tired travellers.

Immigration queues at Malpensa Airport, Milan
This way to the buses.....
The clothing industry of Milan welcomes you
Our buses, but no bags
Our buses, our people, still no bags
Doug Froggatt and Haddon Donald resigned to life without bags
Malpensa early on Sunday
Our bags appear at last.
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All three buses arrived at the Hotel Jolly Touring at about the same time, despite an attempt to stagger the arrivals. Fortunately our bus (Bus No. 1) was first so we were able to grab our bags and head to our room before the others crowded into the hotel foyer.

The mid-price Hotel Jolly chain have hotels throughout Italy and we found them to be comfortable and of a good standard, especially for a tour group of our size. A good choice Ruth!

Hotel Jolly Touring in Milan

Milan - Lunch

Our first shower in 30 hours was short-lived as lunch was to be served at 12.30 sharp. We all arrived, found seats and were treated to our first Italian meal - Minestrone Soup, sliced veal with potatoes and carrots followed by gelato and coffee, washed down of course with vino rosso - Cavalchina 2003.

Our first lunch in Milan

Sunday in Milan

A fine afternoon led us out onto the streets of Milan near the hotel, passing the Porta Nuova, part of the original wall around the city. The tour guide tells us

"This gate, part of the 12th-century walls of the city, were reinforced and embellished by Azzone Viscount (1330-39), and consists of two arches flanked by towers. In the 15th century it was partially demolished and incorporated into other buildings, and then restored in 1861. It was further restored in 1931 with architectural changes."

Being Sunday, few shops were open, and there were few people about, except those walking dogs. We came across this large dog in a nearby street, the owner telling us that it weighed 80kg.

The Porta Nuova, near our Hotel
The Porta Nuova
Flower boxes in the Porta Nuova
Ourselves beside the arch
A local resident with dog - all 80kg of furry animal
A local flowershop

Dinner that evening consisted of rice Risotto, pork slices with peas, fruit for desert and of course vino rosso.

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Last updated: 16/09/2010