Winding Down in Turin

OCT. 3 - TURIN - Our guidebook calls Turin "the most French city in Italy." Indeed, it's located less than fifty miles from the French border, near the Alps in northern Italy. The architecture is much more reminiscent of Paris than of any Italian city. And though we've had great food throughout our trip, we've enjoyed more consistently delicious meals here than anywhere else.

The sightseeing, on the other hand, has not been the best. Though there are a number of interesting sights, many of them are in the midst of being overhauled or renovated in preparation for the 2006 Winter Olympics. And though one of the city's claims to fame is the fabled Shroud of Turin, the holy relic is safely locked away, and the chapel which houses it was closed during our visit. Even the weather has not been cooperating; the city has been socked in by thick, grey clouds since our arrival, cloaking Turin's otherwise stellar views of the nearby Alps.

Overall, however, we have enjoyed our stay in this charming city. After the frenzy of Rome, it's been nice to wind down our trip in a classy, quiet city (I haven't seen a single American tourist). Michelle has also met some important scholars here at the University of Turin, where much of her research may be centered in the future. Tomorrow we return to Paris, on the last leg of our trip. After spending a few days with our friends Taylor and Taija, we'll depart for home at long last.

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