Take a Hike.

December 10, 2013 § 1 Comment

This weekend was full of excitement (as they always are), of a variety of sorts.  Saturday was a pretty successful day at school (the kids actually carried a conversation in a language other than Italian– occasionally even relevant to the topic I was teaching!), and then I joined the rest of Italy’s elderly population to watch the inauguration of the Scala’s new season with La Traviata while munching on warm chestnuts.

Sunday I had planned a hike outing with a few friends, so I woke up earlier than I would have liked.  Looked outside- mist like I have never seen before.  The entire city of Monza seemed to be covered in a ridiculously fluffy white cloud that refused to budge.  And it was cold.

Met up with the gang- three crazy Italians, a Polish girl, and a traveler from Korea- on the train.  By the time that we finished up introductions and the first box of cookies, the sun broke through the fog and the jagged mountains all around us came into view.  Apparently, this is normal: Milan and its suburbs shrouded in white and the area around Lake Como clear and beautiful.


We began the hike in Varenna:


And then pre-hiked our hike with a stroll to an abandoned ‘village’ near a source, a panoramic view terrace (though which step of this hike wasn’t panoramic-view-worthy?), and a cemetery on the side of the mountain:


The hiking trail itself was full of up-and-down’s, old churches, mountain views, cliffs, rivers, and cachi:

Eventually, we arrived in Bellano, the next city over:


So, we poked our noses into the town’s hot spots:


And then caught the sunset over the lake while running to catch our train back:


The station didn’t have a machine to buy train tickets, so we had an exciting illegal journey back (although the conductor did control me in the same minute as we were pulling into Monza, so, in the end, all was paid for and rightened, fear not) with carriages that were out of power (translation: complete blackness while zooming through mountain tunnels + brrr).

Pulling into Monza, I was greeted by the morning’s fog, but with nighttime illumination.


And to finish off the weekend, Einaudi concert in Milano and a late-night, cold-train ride home.

And then a cup of hot chocolate, to warm the heart and soul (and hands and toes).


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