Milan

This is a random post because I haven’t really done much for the past few days except hang out with MD and go to Milan.  But, of course, there is a hot guy at the end of the story…in  a sense.

MD has been fabulous and allowed me to escape crazy roommate for two nights straight, as well as enabling me to decimate what was left of my meager bank account.  (It had to be done, I can’t be walking around wearing American size ‘medium’ anymore….as I’m sure you can imagine, it’s like wearing an Italian XL…and looks sloppy at best.)  I feel I might as well use up the money here, since upon my return to America, I will be (barely) only one step up from a customer service slave to the masses, and only desperation will allow me to refill the account without slowly poisoning the denizens of my city with arsenic.

I also feel, as all ‘real’ gays should, that if a pair of jeans looks cute, you have to buy them, regardless of cost or quality.  Or, more often in my case, if the salesperson is cute, and lies about the jeans to your face, you must still buy them.  It’s always best to bring ‘the honest friend’ along, especially one who is skillful in the art of train travel.

So, off we went to Milan yesterday. I in search of the rush really only Italy can provide, that of the perfect storm of way too much sugar, caffeine, and a dose of hot man-candy, MD, along for moral support and a variety of essential beauty products.

Once you see the picture below, I will once again lose some ‘Daniel P., world traveler points,’ but it was either start a bitch match with this guy, or only mildly suffer and then passive-aggressively punish the guy across from me with own my long legs instead.

After reading some other ridiculous blogs in which exclamation points are often used…in reference to things such as:

– “Europeans don’t have any sense of personal space!!!!! OMG, get away!!!”

– “OMG!!!  The toilet was just a hole in the ground, EWWW!!”

– “Everyone is always late to everything!!!  UGH! It’s so annoying!!”

– “OMFG! I got cut in line again!!”

– “Holy smokes!  How are Italians so skinny?  They eat nothing but pasta!!!!!”

– “Wow!!  Italians are soooo fabulously fashionable and put together!”

Most of these have moderately rational explanations (which I promise will be part of my “end of trip” post), and quite frankly are refreshing (at times), as I find Americans to be obnoxiously polite, slow, lazy, selfish, and often completely unaware of their surroundings.

But, this guy.  I mean really.

Now, I have learned to give up my well honed, “6-feet-at-all-times around me even if you’re my family” personal space, especially when on buses, or in the line at the grocery store (I mean really lady, are you smelling the back of my neck for a particular reason?).  But this guy was already sitting like this, in a packed train, even before he fell asleep.  I felt bad about it later, but the poor (apparently frightened at hearing English) guy across from me had to tuck his little Italian legs beneath his seat.  I’m sorry I’m 6 feet tall and you’re only 4.  Life is hard.  Now move those Ferragamos.

Upon arrival in Milan, one notices that it isn’t an attractive city at all.  Yes, I felt that the general populace is more smartly dressed, but they also tended to be older, richer, and smartly dressed in a boring “i’m a banker, but still attractive” kind of way.  But the city itself, minus the cathedral, was ‘meh.’ Turin is much more regal, interesting, and definitely cleaner.

(random attractive Italian cathedral)

(random attractive Italian, a destra)

After the prerequisite and oh-so-satisfying trip to La Rinascente, it was time for my secret real reason for being so excited about Milan… Included on our tour of the city was a visit to Chocolat!!  Holy smokes this place was good!  As far as my tour of gelato (megapost coming at some point, I swear) goes, it’s in the top three.  I almost couldn’t finish my cup o’ chocolatey goodness.  Almost.  It wins points for: most flavors of chocolate gelato (obviously), smart styling, the hiring of (chocolate) minorities, and the steady stream of extremely attractive Italian men sweeping in and out of the door for a quick ice cream, coffee, and/or hair check.

[Note to ALL travelers to Milan.  Bring a lighter.  Even if you don’t smoke.  I promise you won’t regret it.]



After more walking around in a carb-tastic, post-chocolate daze, and spending way too much money at H&M, we started walking by a line of people. To get into a store.  An Abercrombie & Fitch. Yes.  Here in Italy at last.  Three cheers for globalization!!!

I had already witnessed this phenomenon multiple times in NYC, where Europeans (and probably U.S. tourists from Texas) would line up literally around the block for the A&F on 5th avenue.

This is even more curious now, because:

A.  I may have gotten a tad older, but, once 40-yr-old gays started to wear A&F, it was a death knell for its coolness.  I could be wrong, but, I don’t think that it’s currently the pinnacle of “American” style and fashion it once may have been.

B.  Italians could buy a round-trip plane ticket to NYC, buy all of their clothes at the A&F there, and still save money than if they bought it in Milan.

C.  Um, now that it’s in Italy…it’s not really all that interesting, far away, or even very American anymore.  It’s like H&M in Atlanta.  H&M was only cool before it arrived in Atlanta because you were wearing clothes that could only be bought in Chicago or NYC.  Now, it’s just another GAP.

All this being said…..you KNOW I had to get my picture taken with the hot Italian A&F beefcake, whose soul purpose (like in America during the holidays) is to stand in front of the door and look hot… I mean, c’mon! Look at him!   W* Milano!!

Um, someone give him a cookie please.

Also amusing is the guy in the background, whose smirk says: “Um, yeah, I know exactly what you’re up to mister”

After my sugar-high-enhanced heart palpitations began to slow, it was time to return home.  This time, having learned the hard way, I had ample legroom and armrest space…without having to cut anyone.

Also, a nice young lady heard us speaking in English (maaaayyyybe about how certain Italians could kiss our grits…) and wished us a Happy Thanksgiving.  It was sweet, but also a sign of how far I’ve literally and figuratively come, as I had no idea (or cared) that it was even turkey day.

Upon return, the wonderful FS procured all I need to survive in this world: french fries and pizza with four kinds of meat…mmmm…Thanks MD and FS!!

(*short for viva!)

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~ by Daniel on November 27, 2009.

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