Travelling for crew, isn’t what it used to be. Not long ago, a pilot used to be sure he could travel the world and have a fun time at it. We used to boast that our careers are actually a blessing, we were paid to fly the big jets, paid to have vacations almost anywhere we went and paid to enjoy the culture and magic that is the world.
Leaner times and more “efficient” managers have switched us from world travelers to machine operators and those old days are quickly forgotten. It happens that once the city becomes interesting and there are actually things to do over there, more travelers come to that city and the airlines increase frequencies to that place, hence a shorter stop that is barely enough for a rest.
The more “boring” the place is, the longer you stay it, and vice-versa.
However, once in a while, through the magic of scheduling snafus, and “efficiency” decisions, you find yourself spending some time in a city that is actually worth your time. You rest, you have a snack and then you find you have time to do stuff.
Milan, the drinkable city, the fashion capital of the world, was a elaborate mesh of activity, life and ornate artistry. I visited the Gothic Duomo di Milano cathedral and the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent, housing Leonardo da Vinci’s fresco “The Last Supper,” which are both signs of grandeur since beyond the times of Barbarossa, spanning the European empires since Rome, switching hand from French, Spanish and Austrian empires, to the Italian Kingdom.
The streets of Milano, show this history wonderfully, relics of WWII stand hand-in-hand with early christian churches and Roman amphitheaters. The Basilica of San Lorenzo (313 A.D.) is a ten minute walk from the ever-grand art work that is the Duomo di Milano, the city shows that life never paused in this place for the past couple of millennia.
The picture on top was taken with the camera of an iPhone 6, such is the gravity of art in the city, there is no need for a professional camera to show the intricate architecture.