My Girl, and I took a 5-day trip to Milan, Italy, mainly to eat, shop and flirt with Italian men.
We arrived at Malpensa, the biggest airport in Milan, which is not far away from the city centre. We bought bus tickets there, and the bus took us straight to the city centre where our hotel was. The room was quite big for two people and was very clean. I felt comfortable there. Ok enough about the hotel… let’s move on.
We were Italian virgins, never been there before, so we were keyed up. Our first impression of Italian people was bad, they seemed so rude, we were like excuse us, we came here to give your country some money through shopping and eating, we know about your credit crunch.
We didn’t really understand were the rudeness came from, like hello can’t you see that we are tourists; we were standing there looking confused, trying to read the map.
Well… Italy is a country with different kinds of people like any other country. On our way to our hotel, we got lost so we asked an old Italian man, if he could guide us, he tried with the few words he knew in English to explain the way, when he suddenly notices that we didn’t understand anything coming out of his mouth, he takes one of our bags and gives us a sign to follow him, he walks us all the way to the hotel, while we are walking towards the hotel, his phone rings and he says Consolato, and I’m like he saying my name, my second name is Consolata.
I explained to him that my second name is Consolata, and he explains to me that in Italy boys are named Consolato and girls are named Consolata, I felt like I was home when I said that, I told my friend to only call me Consolata, because that is my Italian name, feeling very confident all of the sudden. After checking into the hotel and freshening up, we decided to go out and get some lunch. The second we walk onto the streets, people started staring at us; people in the shops, people in the bus, people in the metro, we were like what is the dealio? We are like do we look that good? But it was adoring attention, mostly from men. Men and women are telling you how beautiful you are, running down the street after you telling you that they will die if you don’t speak to them (very corny, but in Italy it has a sense of romance) The only bad thing I can say is that it became overwhelming at times. As a black person in Italy you will either be taken as a black immigrant (thereby identified as African) or due to your attire and attitude as a tourist. But confusion arises occasionally. When you look like “money”, you will be well-received as a tourist.
So you should be aware that there is a widespread sense of racism towards the black population in Italy. This may manifest in stares when you go to restaurants or just go out in public, at our hotel they asked us to pay in advance instead of paying after our stay, which wasn’t the custom in Italy.
In Milan we didn’t see a lot of black people, and sadly no brothers, we went eating and clubbing but no brothers were available or in reach should I rather say, that was a bummer!
But Italian Men, where should I start Italian men are handsome, charming gentlemen. But on the other hand the legend says Italian men are romantic gentlemen, but the reality is they want to take off your underwear much faster – if possible – than any other man, which is not necessarily a bad thing, especially if they know how to do it, and if this is what a woman is looking for, I may say that Italian men are like Casanovas, they make you feel alive and desired.
We went out for drinks one day and ran into some guys that invited us out for some drinks, they were such gentlemen, living in Denmark you surely forget how a girl should be treated. They asked us, how we liked Milan, and we were like we love being here, but we don’t understand why people are staring at us. The first question was “are you Nigerians?” and we were like no, I’m from Uganda and my friend is from Ghana, and they were like okay, we have many Nigerian girls selling themselves, so people will think that you are hookers and by the way you look, people may think that you are high class hookers. We laughed and laughed, because this is exactly what we thought people were thinking about us. It’s sad that in 2013, two young black girls on a holiday, having fun, spending money, are considered being high class hookers, just because of their color.
Okay enough of that, back to the trip.
The Metro is a great way to get around in Milan. For 3.50 € you get a ticket which is then valid for a period of 24 hours. Milan is quite a small city so it is actually not a problem walking around to the major attractions. It seems like Milan also have an extensive network of tram lines, the good thing about taking the tram is, that you get to see all the beautiful scenery. We were looking much forward to going to Italy and to try out some authentic Italian cuisine. The first couple of nights we went to a place located right next to the hotel, that place was amazing; good food, good wine, you know that feeling of being completely happy and fulfilled, just because of food, I had 5 days of that beautiful feeling or should I say filling.
Milan has beautiful tourist attractions. The main tourist attractions that you must not miss in Milan are the Grand Cathedral Duomo, the famous Galleria shopping arcade and the La Rinascente department store. And they are all within walking distance from one another, so in theory you could check these off easily within a day.
But first, some photos of the Grand Cathedral of Milan = The Duomo. I can’t say I’ve been to Milan unless I’ve taken at least a few snapshots in front of this incredible structure right?
Overall, the trip was an absolute blast.