We ended Part 1 with dreams of harp guitars swirling in my jet-lagged head. Ironically, I’d be able to rest a bit better once I was up.
The second day of our trip happened to be Easter Sunday, and so it would be a relaxing day of food and family (with Jaci and I “adopted family”). But first, a “short, 30-minute walk” with Franco, that turned into 2 hours. But that’s Genoa!
Starting out, the very first thing we come across around a couple of short corners is Genoa’s largest church, Chiesa di S. Maria. You may recall that it can be prominently seen in the upper right of this panoramic postcard we got 2 years ago:
Franco took us on a long walk around the city center, rather than down into it, so everything was new to us, starting with another local church, still undergoing restoration after many years.
A small but lovely palazzo. On top and behind the wall is the porte cochere (carport).
We soon reached a circular promenade overlooking the gorgeous Ligurian Sea. Weather was lovely if a bit chilly.
A corner apartment building bordering the promenade park. Beautiful (and pricey).
A rare, private backyard/garden behind another apartment complex.
Not sure what the zoning is on the billboards, it’s common on many long flat walls. Luckily, most walls are ornate and left unadorned. Graffiti is also at a minimum in Franco’s neighborhood.
A large, quiet, wooded park surrounds an old municipal building, now a museum. The photographer (Jaci) is facing the sea.
On the other side of the park, looking east.
A random apartment building, with charming corner open gazebo rooftop gardens.
A long narrow parkway, with that wonderful Genovese Dr. Seussian layout becoming more apparent. I’m pointing to the cars that have driven from the street (where I am) onto the roof of their owners’ 6-story building which is below, yet adjacent!
Same spot: Again, we are looking down at the roof of an adjacent 5-story building. No privacy for the owners of a classy roof-top spa, but then maybe its just a swimming pool for seabirds.
The street finally becomes a bridge, as we stop to face the city center. This is an uncommon street in Genoa – wide and straight! At right is…
…this imposing and very ancient Romanesque church.
A few yards down, another “small” but incredible mariner’s palazzo.
We finally wind down to the large central park with that great statue of I forget who.
Ah, here’s what I remember from the last trip – all the trompe l’oeil buildings (centuries-old painting).
We’re heading back through the shopping district, with many of the stores (now closed) offering Easter goodies. I didn’t know they were into the whole egg thing, too, but I guess spring is spring, right?
Large chocolate eggs, beautifully frosting-decorated.
We are always mesmerized by the endless commonplace details that any Architectural Salvage store in the States would kill for.
Just a couple examples – I’ll spare you Jaci’s endless shots of doors and about a thousand manhole covers (which are a bit cooler than ours).
All of a sudden, things looked again familiar, and we realized we had reached the corner of our hotel from the last trip. A few steps and we were in the unforgettable city square. At left is…
…the beautiful 100-year-old stock exchange building, which we now learn is where we will be holding Friday’s concert!
As I said, this was about a 2-hour walk, and we were now late for Easter brunch, so took a cab home to meet…
…Franco’s daughter Rosella and husband Giorgio. Margherita had the table laid out with Easter decorations…
…including the traditional colomba cake (= dove). “Buona Pasqua” says “Happy Easter!”
But first lunch, which was lasagna, then the traditional lamb stew (among many other things, including the ubiquitous wine).
Unbeknownst to Franco and family, Jaci had prepared a little surprise of our own – the traditional American Easter egg hunt! She had brought it all from home and had quietly hidden them throughout some of the rooms when she got up.
It was a hit, with Margherita finding the most (and making the most noise). Franco managed to find the one brought especially for him, the elaborate DVD set of The Ten Commandments (with “parting Red Sea”!), in which Jaci appears in the Special Features. Franco is a major technophile, so managed to play it.
Margherita received from Rosella and Giorgio one of those beautiful decorated chocolate eggs…
…only to immediately destroy it – tearing it open to find various toys and treats inside.
We later spent the final daylight hours (after which we immediately crashed) on Franco’s back patio, overlooking the port. Hey, that’s the same cruise ship that was parked there the last trip! (the Tasmanian Devil rather overwhelms the port).
Next time: Off to Milan!
You can also go back and begin at the start of our 2012 Italian adventure here: Another Genoese Feast, with a Side Dish of Milan