Wednesday, May 5, 2010

It's not snowing today thank god!

I used to be able to say that in Irish Gaelic... somehow I've forgotten. Yesterday (Wednesday) was a very long wet day on the road. Alan and I loaded the MG with our kit and set off for Italy at about 5:30 AM. `Still a bit jet lagged and dealing with about 3 hours of sleep and a several more of fitful dozing.

Most of the trip was done in varying degrees of drizzle, rain... and more rain. What could be seen of the Alps were spectacular! Alan took me on a brief run off the main highway on a lower section on the San Bernadino pass to get a dose of the REAL ALPINE pass driving... Okay Oregon, your roads are beautiful (one of the many reasons I moved). But baby, come back and see me when you've grown up (heh).
We stopped in Lugano for Capucino and I met "Edo" from the Slot Forum before contiuning on to Brescia and the Mille Miglia Museum.

Holy ground. We had reservations at "La Taverna" where "Il Commendatore" (Enzo Ferrari for you non-motorheads)used to "hold court". The gnocchi in creamy tomato was very nice... an excellent "Primi" with my Sangiovesi. "Secondi" was a pan seared veal in olive oil with a hint of oregano. Things at the museum were all a-bustle with preparations for the Mille Miglia Storica which starts on Thursday. The museum was great! lots of reference pix and a few chotchkies later we started for the Alfa Romeo Museum and then realized we'd have to fight our way back through Milan Traffic... It was just too late in the day to start. We opted for a nice country drive to Mantua, birthplace of "Il Maestro", Tazio Nuvolari, "The Flying Mantuan" (a very famous pre WWII racing driver). We knew the museum would not be open until the fall but we had the time. We were to have dinner with Maurizio Ferrari and family in Reggio-Emilia that evening. Maurizio needs no introduction to the slot racing community. For the rest of you... He is Slotit. Maurizio produces the best engineered ready to run slot cars and slot car parts available today. We met him at his office and "got the tour". He showed us some very exciting new things they're working as well as test mock up of the upcoming Ford GT 40... very cool. We followed him to the B&B he had arranged for us in a city park then we went to his home and met his family for dinner. Maurizio's wife, Olivia had prepared a marvelous dinner for us. Primi was two wonderful home made Tortelone. One was spinach and cheese the other was pumpkin and mushroom. I'm blanking about the "Secondi" course at the moment but, I'll fill that in when it comes to me. Desert was a wonderful cake with a sugar egg white glaze and fresh strawberries. Conversation ran the gamut from slot cars and family to motor sports. Maurizio and Olivia are wonderful hosts. They made us feel more like family than visiting friends.

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