Babbo Natale* is not seated in an eccentric grotto. He’s not surrounded by glorious, svelte elves handing out candy. He’s not fat or loveably pudgy. He doesn’t even bellow ‘ho ho ho’.
I am sitting at the watered won British-Lebanese chain restaurant Comptoir Libanais. It’s one of the better chain restaurants that Britons favour, as it actually has some individuality flavour.
Milan; Fashion. Economy. Italian glitterati jet-flying set. The original seat of fascism. Imposing architecture. WWII. The Last Supper.
Milan, I would wager, is to the parochial tourist Italy’s most disappointing city.
Tomorrow, I return to Italy. Unsurprisingly, you can hear the titillating excitement in my copy.
There is really nothing quite like a European Christmas. The spirit and festivity is utterly alive, underpinned by a strong religious backbone which makes the occasion ever the more charming and spiritual.
It seems incongruous to talk about Italy and fail to touch on its sartorial repertoire. For, fashion is ingrained within the Italian culture, no?
One week away hardly seems fair. Surely, a mere 10 days or less cannot do justice to a place? And this is right, of course. However, there are some holidays, sojourns and adventures where you walk, or run into the departure lounge with a feeling of renewal, invigoration and nostalgic longing for the comforts of home. We are all, to an extent, home-bunnies, but there are some escapades that ignite the domestic yearnings more.
I am constantly, astounded and enthralled by Italy’s culinary agenda. Pizza, pasta, prosciutto, gelato, brioche – so many of the greats hail from the Italian shores.