Thursday, September 18, 2014

Ciao, Italia.

 All great adventures have 
moments that are really crap.”
― Ellen Potter,

 Because it's late (almost 1 am our time), I'm not going to write much tonight.  We arrived in Barcelona this evening after an interesting flight (cough) on Vueling Airlines, a low-cost carrier owned by Iberia Airlines.  The Australian guy who sat next to me is a steward on a private yacht and was on his way to a three-day vacation in Barcelona because he felt the bar scene in the city would be great.

I've included in this post some photos I took in Genova today.  It was a gloomy day, and that made the gritty city seem even dirtier. 

 "It's probably good that we ended the Italy part of this trip in Genova," I said to Mike as we walked around this morning.

"Why is that?" he wanted to know.

"Because as sad as I am to leave Italy," I told him, "I'm glad to get out of Genova. Ugh. It takes a little of the edge off of my sadness."

 I know there are people who probably love the place, but I'd like to talk to them to see what I missed.  We both thought that it showed a lack of pride in the city to let it rot away the way Genova is.  Oh, well.  The street in the above photo is a main street filled with hotels, restaurants, and shops. It needs a good washing.

 The portico in the photo above is across from the Genova Aquarium, *the* main tourist attraction in the city.  Cheap souvenir stands, fish stalls, and cheap restaurants line the three-block portico. The cleanest place there was a McDonald's.

 I mentioned yesterday that there is a lot of trompe l'oeil in Genova. While we were walking around today, I found a few additional examples.  The peach-colored building above is painted to look like blocks. The building on the left is a block building.

 I think that they must have recently painted the building because I could see pencil lines that the painter followed (above).

 The Genovese didn't invent trompe l'oeil, but they do use it a lot.  According to law, the  historic buildings must maintain their decor. When the mortar deteriorates, it is less expensive to remove it and paint the fresco to look like the old decor.  Note the building below.  The side, which is the majority of the photo, is all trompe l'oeil while the front, which you can barely see, is still mortar.

 I also said yesterday that the buildings in Genova are filty.  The photo shows how much filth from exhaust covers buildings in town. In the two days we were in town, I saw only two cyclists.  Everyone else drove cars, rode on buses, or drove motor scooters.

We were in Piazza Ferrari this morning, and it appears someone is cleaning an absolutely beautiful building in that area.  If you look at the photo below, you can see that the stones on the left side of the photo are pinker than those on the right.

i hope that's what they're doing because the building (the top is below) is the most beautiful one we saw in Genova.

The biggest problem that I had with Genova, though, was that I never found any Genoa salami.  I saw Milano salami and Soppressata, but I never saw Genoa salami. My mother loved Genoa salami, and it's the only kind we had growing up. I even buy it in Las Vegas, but I can't find it in Genova, the place where it originated. I think that if you're going to name a salami after your city, you could at least have some of it available for tourists to buy.

Tomorrow (or much later tonight since it's already Friday here): Of Vueling, Australian stewards, and Spanish taxi drivers

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