The mail boxes outside the main Post office in Piazza Martiri di Belfiore captured my attention.
They are the old kind, when the envelopes were sorted manually so they had specific holes for several destinations. The ones here are for:
- letters and postcards in town
- correspondence in town
- correspondence in the province
- business card and illustrated postcards
- fast mail and air mail
It is always interesting to realize how much those stuff have changed over the years. Now the mail sorting is done by computers, they actually read the handwritten address and put all in the right place.... i wonder if this is the reason why my package always get lost :-)
This is not necessary a tip, actually it is more like a funny curiosity!
I was strolling around and I noticed this colorful shop selling.... man beachwear... awfully expensive man's beachwear!!!
But, after I recover from having seen the price's tags what gave me a good laugh was the sign hang on the door.... instead of the common "Torno subito" (back soon) they wrote GONE TANNING!!! ha ha ha very very appropriate, let me tell you!
Many foods are made in or around Mantova. One that we purchased is called "Sbrisolona", a cake made in Mantova. Now it is mass produced, but it can still be found handmade in bakers' shops,where we purchased ours. It is like a cookie & a cake combined & filled with Almonds. Delicious, but you need milk or some kind of drink with it because, like a crisp cookie, it needs moisture.
Another sweet made in Mantova, but by only one shop, is called "Palle di Rigoletto". It is a praline that commemorates Verdi's opera set in Mantua
Other pastry specialties are cakes called "Bignolata", "Pappa di Mantova", "Torta di Zucca", "Torta di Tagliatelle", & "Bussolani"
Also typical of the area is "Garlic Salami" produced by Mantuan factories who guarantee good quality. Excellent grilled or with rice.
Note: it does not keep well.
Cheeses that are eaten are "Grana Padano" Cheese (from left of the Po river) as well as "Parmigiano Reggiano" from right of the Po).
A typical menu includes "Tortelli", fresh pasta filled with pumpkin, which we tasted and thought was delicious. "Sorbir d' agnoli" is a popular dish which is usually served as a first course. It is a bowl of agnolini (meat ravioli) with broth and often a dash of Lambrusco!
"Risotto alla pilota" is another speciality. It is made with steamed Vialone Nano rice seasoned with minced pork or sausage fried in butter and Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano. Risotto (rice) made with pumpkin, mushrooms, fish or shrimps is also popular.
We often saw "Luccio in salsa" on the menu which is a main course made of boiled pike served with a sauce made of pepper, capers, anchovies, and extra-virgin olive oil.
A little German influence"Cotechino con crauti" (pork sausage with sauerkraut) is also popular.
My favorite was a soup of bean and pasta (usually wide noodles).
Mantova (Mantua) has interesting cuisine, indeed.
On Friday, October 24, 2003, Italy conducted an all-nation strike of Union Members....all Unions.
The strike concerned their pensions. The government was proposing that the Union workers would have to work until the age 40 or for so many years. Thus, the entire country was shuting down.
In Mantova, we walked out of our hotel to discover hordes of people marching, some with flags; some with drums, and some on bikes.
This pictures shows just the beginning. It went on and on...the flags represented the particular Union that the person belonged to. There were teachers, railroad workers, truck drivers, people who worked at the Tourist Attractions, and several others.
A loud speaker and podium were set up in Piazza Sordello. Music was blasting, marchers were shouting slogans, dogs were barking, and drums were beating. It was quite a festive event.
Then the numerous Union leaders started to speak, and the crowds were cheering them on. We were told that all Tourist attractions were closed except one, the Palazzo Te. Fortunately for us, that is the very spot that we were headed!
I must say that we have never been to Italy (3 times) without encountering a strike. So, we were not shocked this time, but we were glad that we were not using Public Transportation.
Ma chi sono i Madonnari ?
Valenti artisti che con abilit? trasformano una porzione di suolo in un piccolo capolavoro dell'arte. Non importa se su di una strada, un selciato, asfalto o cemento con gesti sapienti e con l'aiuto di comuni gessetti colorati ripropongono le opere dei migliori artisti. ogni anno si ritrovano sul sagrato del Santuario di Santa Maria delle Grazie (a 5 Km da Mantova il 15 agosto, giorno dell'Assunta).
Vedere la perfezione d queste effimere opere fa... VENIRE LA PELLE D'OCA!
Madonnari...? Who are they? ARTISTS! not common ones, but very special painters who use streets as their canvas.
You'll find them every year on 15th August in front of the church of Santa Maria delle Grazie (5Km from Mn)
Il fatto di essere un acitt? molto piccola spesso porta ad essere ignorata dagli stessi italiani... Ma le opportunit? non mancano: dalla corsa storica delle Mille Miglia al Festival della letteratura... non ? facile descrivere tutto, quindi se siete interessati vi consiglio di dare un'occhiata al sito www.a-mantova.com dove oltre a notizie storiche e ad informazioni pratiche su traffico e parcheggi troverete tutti gli ultimi eventi da non perdere!
Being a small city means not to be known even by Italians!
We have a lot to offers from car races to literature festivals... to describe them here would be very difficult: they're so amazing!
If you want to spend a few minutes, visit the web site www.a-mantova.com