Saturday, April 3st: From Milan to Genoa
"I woke up at 1 am, feeling rested and wanting a shower. My shower woke up Mike, and we spent an hour or so watching CNN's coverage of the late-night bombing of Internal Ministry buildings in Belgrade. (Yugoslavia).
We had breakfast at the hotel and left Milan along the Autostrada A7 for Genoa. We arrived in Genoa ~12:30 pm but were lost without a map. So, my Mom called Enrico (her cousin). He and Zio Gino (her uncle) came to find us and escorted us back to Enrico and Franca's flat." Enrico Serena is my mom's cousin, and Franca is his wife. They have two children, Barbara and Andrea. Barbara is married to Tony, and they also have two children, Matteo and Lisa.
"Franca made lunch for us - pasta in a red sauce, chicken salad with lettuce, oil, and vinegar. We sat and talked with Enrico, Franca, Zio Gino, Barbara and Tony (who live next door), and their children, Matteo and Lisa.
Barbara, Tony, and Matteo
Tony and Matteo with the toy ship Mom and Dad brought
At about 3 pm, Tony, Enrico, and Zio Gino escorted us to our hotel, which was across town (~ 20 minutes away):
Hotel BritanniaAfter checking in, we all wandered around the port until dinner time. This included riding "Il Bigo" - a passenger car [enclosed viewing platform] hoisted in the air for a view of the city - and taking a boat ride around the port. This gave us plenty of opportunities to take pictures of La Lanterna, Genoa's lighthouse, for Grandma.
Via Balbi, 38
Phone: (010) 26991
Information from "Eyewitness Travel Guides: Italy", page 229: "The port is the heart of Genoa and the origin of its wealth and power as a seafaring city state in the 11th and 12th centuries. It is a workaday place, given over to container shipping and ringed by busy roads and 1960s wharves and office buildings. Among the vestiges of its medieval glory is La Lanterna (restored in the 1540s) near the Stazione Marittima."
Information from www.provincia.genova.it/arte/arte02.html: "Situated on a rock at the western end of the Port of Genoa arc, easily visible from many viewpoints is "La Lanterna", the lighthouse symbol of the city. Considering that it was and still is the port beacon, it is mainly visible from the sea. Already in medieval times the site where the "Lanterna" rises was known as Capo di Faro viz. Beacon Promontory. The lighthouse, 117 meters above sea level, radiates its light up to 36 nautical miles distance. In the district of San Benigno, neighboring on the new office district, it marks entrance to the city to visitors arriving from the west."
The rental car, as seen from the front of the hotel
The port in Genoa
Il Bigo. The white structure next to it is an ice skating rink.
Mom, Enrico, and Zio Gino on Il Bigo
Mike took some panoramic photos of the city from Il Bigo
Mike and I on the boat
After the boat ride, we walked around the historic district, visiting churches mostly. First, we stopped at the Cathedral with the bomb that fell but never exploded. There, we learned that the city's colors were black and white, which explained the color scheme of the church. The second church we went to was San Donato, where they had an elaborate display for Easter. While waling around the area, Mom and Dad bought some pastries for dessert.
The rest of the evening was spent at the Serena residence, having yet another very good and very large meal."