Saturday, October 26th, 2013

We call it Genoa. The birthplace of Cristoforo Colombo. There’s a big statue of him just outside the main train station the I neglected to photograph but I’ll bet I can find a photo on the web. As I said in the last post, the Italian cities all have their own special character. Genova is built on the side of a hill which becomes at time painfully obvious when walking up and down. I had a Servas host family there which was delightful. Sabina was a great cook and I ate with them both nights. Stefano is the father and their two kids;Lorenzo, 12, and Clara,10. I also met both sets of the kids’ grandparents because Clara (such a cutie) had some kind of cold or infection that had gone to her lung and was staying home from school and hence the grandparent babysitters. I say lung because Sabina explained that Clara had lost a lung when she was younger and gave no further explanation. It certainly didn’t effect her spirit. Oh, yes, there is also the rabbit, Rafael, that hops around, grooms himself like a cat and occasionally begs for vegetable scraps in the kitchen. Their house was described as 200 meters from the train station which was quite convenient but, and it’s a big BUT, the last 50 meters are up a fairly steep hill.

Looking at the photo, first you go straight up. Then there are some stairs going first to the left and then the right. Then you arrive at a gate that’s not visible in the photo. After that there are 55 steps (yes, I counted) to the door of the building and another 12 inside to reach the ground floor where their apartment is; it’s the yellow building at the top.


I only took one photo of a room inside the house. It was very nice, as was the family. I noticed a Monopoly Board on the wall that I thought was interesting.

Genova is good exercise. It’s similar when you go down to the port area but the streets are not quite as steep but very narrow. That area seems particularly exotic. There are lots of people from Africa; Morocans, Somalis and who knows what as well as lots of arabs, east indians and pakistanis. Below are some random photos from walking around.

I went to the aquarium there which is quite renowned. It’s interesting and a long walk in its own right after you enter. It is a very good aquarium but I must say that it’s second to the one in Monterey. I’m not much of a museum goer but there was one nearby. Can’t remember the name offhand but was the palazzo of a king of the region.

As far as food goes (always an interest of mine), Sabina advised me to go to a place called Trattoria da Maria that’s in the center. It’s really mostly a place for locals and it certainly helps to speak some Italian but if you can read an Italian menu you can manage. For a primo and a secondo it’s 10 euros. Add in ¼ liter of wine and a half liter of water and the bill comes to 11.50 euros. The foods not spectacular but very much Genovese and well prepared with good ingredients. What more can you ask?

2 Responses to “Genova”

  1. Peter Says:

    Hi Joe,
    As usual, very interesting.

  2. Joe Says:

    I’m glad that you like it Peter.


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