Italy Is Smoke Free

See the no smoking signs across Italy.

I just returned from a business trip to Italy to find that Italian bars, restaurants and airports are now smoke free. This is great news for those of us who don’t want to light up cigarettes as soon as we land in the country. But, honestly, Italy doesn’t smell the same any more and it’s kind of strange. Lovely, but strange.

Thursday In Milan

Flying into Milan yesterday I watched as the plane flew over the channel and across the French borders.

view of france from the planeFlying into Milan yesterday I watched as the plane flew over the channel and across the French borders. I have never noticed how beautiful the French countryside is from above, a big patchwork of browns and greens stretching before you. It was a lovely clear sky and thus I could see for miles. It really was a beautiful site.

milan hotel barArriving in Milan and a 40 minute train ride into the centre of town I made my way to the Windsor Hotel – which was very nice and, despite its name, not very British. I spent most of the evening in the bar with one of the sales guys from our Italian office. Usually, these trips are pretty lonely as I arrive late and am holed up in a hotel room until it’s time to get up and make a meeting, taxi or office. This was nice but I still managed to get to bed at a decent time last night to make this morning’s meeting.

Views of Florence

I’ve spent just a little over 24 hours in Florence. Most of the time I had a meeting and was working, but for the final hour of daylight I managed to walk around a little bit. The biggest surprise of all was how cold it was. There was a very chill wind and I could have used several more layers of clothing.

I’ve spent just a little over 24 hours in Florence. Most of the time I had a meeting and was working, but for the final hour of daylight I managed to walk around a little bit. The biggest surprise of all was how cold it was. There was a very chill wind and I could have used several more layers of clothing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I didn’t get to see any of the art of Leonardo da Vinci (his apprenticeship was in the workshop of Andrea del Verrocchio in Florence in 1466) but I did get to see Duomo – designed by Arnolfo di Cambio at the end of the 13th century – and Ponte Vecchio (still standing from 1345).

It’s a old city with narrow streets and plenty of squares. The best way to get around seems to be on foot – or in typical Italian style on some kind of moped. Of course I had to take the final picture. What are they up?