Hidden Giants

As I flew to Madrid for a short holiday, I couldn’t resist taking some pictures of the stunning views outside the airplane. The clouds were beautifully shaped, creating the most interesting shadows over the earth’s surface…just as described in my poem ‘Clouds’.

The fields in Spain created such strange patterns and combination of colours that some of them appeared to me like strange creatures, like hidden giants only visible from the skies.

More posts to come about Madrid…stay tuned!!!

Fetta di polenta

Fetta di polenta means slice of polenta. It is a building in Torino, Via Giulia di Barolo 9, quite close to the centre of town. Part of the floors were erected in 1840 and the last three were added in 1881. The design is by Alessando Antonelli, the Italian architect who is famous for having planned the Mole Antonelliana (the landmark building of Turin).

It is thought that the building was constructed more as a challenge by the architect than for actual necessity, in fact the land was Antonelli’s and his wife’s own property. The building was officially called Casa Scaccabarozzi – from Antonelli’s wife family name – and the Antonelli couple lived there for a couple of years as no one wanted to move into it for the fear of its instability.
The peculiarities of the building

The building has 9 floors, 2 of which are underground, internally connected by a small staircase.

The peculiarities of the building are clearly its irregular dimensions in width: 16 metres on the longer side, 5 metres on the front but only 54 centimetres on the back side!

The floors are so narrow inside that no furniture can be carried through the staircase. No wonder that an external pulley was added at a later date!

What is polenta?

Polenta is a typical Northern-Italian dish made from yellow cornmeal. It is prepared by boiling it in water for a long time stirring it with a wooden spoon until it becomes thick and porridge-like. It can be then cooked in the oven until it goes golden and crunchy and then cut into slices. Nowadays it is also sold as a quick-cook dish that only takes a few minutes to prepare. It can be eaten with anything with a gravy or a sauce, from tomato sauce to cheese, from meat to fish. It is very tasty, nutricious and warm, which is what has made it a popular dish amongst mountaneeirs.