“Pic of the Week”, August 16, 2019: Fashion Week, Milan

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Milan Fashion Week was founded in 1958 and is held twice a year– once in the spring, and once in fall.  We were surprised to find ourselves in the middle of the fall show during our recent visit to the city, especially notable in the Brera and Duomo neighborhoods.

Fashion Week is a clothing trade show spread over multiple events and venues, including the stereotypical models on runways, models and their photographers on the streets, promotion of clothes and such.  Fashion Week is run by a non-profit association which coordinates and promotes Italian Fashion, both male and female.

Milan’s is one of four important international Fashion Weeks, the others being held in Paris, London and New York.  

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.All Trips / Europe / Sl;ovenia / Slovenia

Signs of Slovenia

Signs of Ljubljana (19)

I like to share some of the signs I encounter during my travels.  They are often entertaining, many being quite clever, and frequently reflect the local culture and customs in some way.

Here are some of the signs I saw in Slovenia.  Many of the signs we encountered during our travels were in Slovenian and make little sense to me, so these aren’t included.  But these photos are representative of what we saw, most originating in the capital of Ljubljana.

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)

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.All Trips / Car Culture / Europe / Italy

Great Cars along the Highway! Ferrari, near Venice

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The Autostrada has excellent rest/food/gas stops placed at regular intervals, and it was at one of these stops close to Venice that we spotted this beautiful Ferrari.  We were not the only ones to admire this lovely machine.  A tour bus had pulled up beside it and seems like everyone was having their photo taken beside this car.

I don’t know enough about Ferraris to tell you with authority which model this is, although some research indicates it likely is a Ferrari F430 Challenge.  Only 142 units were built between 2006 – 2010, so it is not only beautiful to look at but of rare vintage.

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.All Trips / Europe / Italy

A Visit to the Leonardo da Vinci National Science and Technology Museum, Milan

Leonardo Da Vinci National Science and Technology Museum

The da Vinci Science Museum is spread over 40,000 m2 and is in three separate buildings, one of which was a 16th century monastery.  There are more than 15,000 pieces in the museum’s collection, so trying to see everything is like taking everything at the Louvre — an impossibility in a week, much less in a single day.

It’s hard for anyone with a love of science not to be drawn to a museum with the great Leonardo da Vinci’s name in it.  I wish I could gush about what a wonderful museum this was, but that would mostly be untrue.  There were a few aspects to the museum that were quite imaginative and interesting, but overall it was a rambling unfocused collection …

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.All Trips / Europe / Slovenia

A Bee-Keeper’s Paradise — a Visit to the Museum of Apiculture, Radovljica, Slovenia

00 Radovljica Bee Keeping Museum (47)

Radovljica is a small city that’s close to the popular Slovenian lake town of Bled.  It has a well-preserved Medieval square, with many authentic Medieval-era buildings lining it.  Dominating the square is the large Radovljica Mansion that’s home to several interesting museums, including the Museum of Apiculture.

The Museum of Apiculture was founded in 1959 by the Beekeepers’ Association of Slovenia.  The purpose of the museum was to collect records and artefacts documenting the traditional practice of beekeeping, and to help preserve this heritage.  The museum was incorporated into Radovljica Municipality Museums in 1963.

Apiculture Museum, Radovljica

Apiculture Museum, Radovljica

Beekeeping in Slovenia was at its peak in the 18th and 19th centuries, although Slovenian honey and bee products remain popular to this day.  The museum’s exhibits represent …

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.All Trips / Europe / Food / Italy

The Art of the Almond

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Marzipan is popular treat, especially in Europe, made of ground almonds (almond meal) mixed with sugar or honey — sometimes with added almond oil.  It is often molded into the shape of fruit and vegetables and tinted with food coloring, as seen in these window displays in Venice.  I though these little pieces of marzipan quite beautiful and tried a piece — tasty but heavy, not really my style.  

Besides being shaped to look like fruit, marzipan can also rolled flat and used an icing layer for fruitcakes and the like, and sometimes is used as a baking ingredient, as in a German “stollen”.

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.All Trips / Europe / Spain

A Day in Arcos de la Frontera, Spain

00 Arcos de la Frontera (90)

Arcos de la Frontera is one of Andalusia’s famous white hill towns (puebla blanca), situated on a steep hill with cliffs.  The area has long been inhabited by man, with archaeologic remains found in nearby caves dating to the Stone Age.  It’s surrounded on three sides by the Guadalete river and, given it’s geography, would have been a strategic defensive community in past centuries.  Today the town provides some dramatic views of farms in the region.  The town’s name originates from it being at the frontier of Spain’s battle with the Moors, which didn’t end until Granada fell in the 15th century.  

Arcos de la Frontera, Spain

Arcos de la Frontera, Spain

After the expulsion of the Moors from Arcos in the 13th century, ending two centuries of Moorish rule, the …

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.All Trips / Europe / Italy

Milan’s San Bernardino alle Ossa

00 San Bernardino alle Ossa (10)

The most unusual chapel I’ve ever visited is this one in Milan.  It’s located not far from the great Duomo — about a 10 minute walk — and probably would be interesting to most travelers.  Some might argue it’s a morbid sight and I suppose that’s true, but many might regard being buried in a church a great honor.  There are several other bone-filled churches in Europe, although I’ve never visited any before this one.

The main sanctuary of San Bernadino is nice but similar to thousands of other churches in Europe.   Attractive but not very remarkable, in direct contrast to its unusual ossuary.  To find San Bernardino’s famous chapel of bones you need to divert down a corridor to …

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