Finally we can talk of “our” Expo! We saw a great deal of things in a few hours, a concentration of colors, signs, sounds, words and the crowd, such a crowd. Being able to decipher all that we have assimilated in a single day, where in just over eight hours we sailed around the world, it was not easy. We needed to pick the right time to settle everything and give our opinion on what we saw and the emotions that we have felt. Immediately, just inside the western gate, we decided not to queue too long to visit the pavilions more “wanted”, but to try to see more areas possible, devoting time to the visits of the Cluster in which different countries, but united by identity and food issues shared the space. In this way we are really able to make a sort of circumnavigating the globe in a day making enchanted by stories and culinary preparations and flavors, colors, scents and especially from people who have given life to these great common stands.
Now, however, returned home with the Expo passport by color stamps from the participating countries and a cool head, we can draw conclusions. Of what was definitely a positive result, but also the main message of the Milan Expo, “Feeding the planet. Energy for Life” which is not entirely past and has not been implemented in the best way, especially by the younger generation.
Among the winning bets there is certainly the organization that required tremendous effort, but save the endless queues of people in recent weeks, has not recorded incidents. Another success the positive climate that has prevented tensions despite the long waits at the entrance hall and not only those known as Italy and Japan. And if the success is not only measured by counting the numbers of visitors, it is also true that these were impressive. And our news, beyond what has been officially announced, are also based on a direct source, that of my brother, who is responsible for analyzing and monitoring data as a Corporate Strategic Planning at ATM: the numbers are been really huge and growing every day as thant the end of the big event is approached. And even we who have been on October 22, a Thursday which recorded less inputs than any other days that followed, were hit by floods of people who crowded the Decumano and views from above seemed to many small colored ants.
What we believe the Expo is not able to transmit? He was supposed to be a showcase for global biodiverse crops, good country cooking, sustainable food production, the triumph of all those who dedicate their work to the recovery of traditions with an eye to innovation: in short, the good food. But this, as we all know, has been betrayed from the beginning. But to see for yourself entire schools on benches and fake grass devouring Mac Donald’s sandwiches and swigging Coca Cola, instead of being curious and maybe take the healthy and also “different” food available everywhere, was the litmus test that something has not been successful in the initial message.
Another not so positive impression that was linked to the fact that the Expo would have to be universal, but in fact it was not. Among the absences are certainly distinct countries of Northern Europe, like Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark, who have deserted the event causing the lack of a major piece of Europe.
But now we tell you what of this unmissable event got us excited and we are left “on”. We have already mentioned the Cluster. The first, along the Decumanus from west to east is the rice: in this very important food source that feeds more than three billion people has been dedicated a space where they wanted to recreate a miniature paddy. As a veritable forest of taste and flavor was organized cluster of cocoa and chocolate. Here we could not do without to taste “the food of the gods”: our favorite? The one with inside pieces of cocoa beans of Sao Tome Principe. Our regret? Not being able to stock because our was the last tablet! After the chocolate inevitable appointment with a cup of coffee by comparing our Illy with that produced in Africa by tasting that of Burundi.
Slalom fast under the vines cluster Fruit and vegetables, while we wanted to devote more time to travel between the Spices where in the space dedicated to Afghanistan, between glass cases hanging on the walls and carpets, the eighty-nine years old Mohamed Azim Naimzada did smell saffron of his country and patiently stamped pages of passports Expo.
Organized as a large open square the Bio Mediterranean cluster where peacefully and industriously for all 184 days of the Expo have coexisted Albania, Algeria, Egypt, Greece, Lebanon, Malta, Montenegro, San Marino, Serbia and Tunisia. Very evocative the exhibition of “Dry Areas”, while a real blast from the past has been for us a visit to the cluster Islands, Sea and Food that has brought us back to our trip to the island of Saint Lucia that many memories awakened in us especially after the very nice hostess offered us a glass of fragrant rum.
Our tour is finished in the scents of the Square of Biodiversity of Slow Food and the green of the Mediterranean Hill, one of the viewpoints of the Expo where walking in a forest of cork oaks, cypresses and oaks. Our gourmet stops? Lunch of “asado”, roasted grilled meat, in the pavillion of Argentina where without waiting much we even found a seat, and snack at the fun pavilion of Slovakia with trdelník, a typical sweet that before cooking is shaped like a long loaf and coiled around a metal stick that is then cooked in a special oven with a mechanism that rotates: a gourmet goodness tasted some time ago in Prague and savored again in warm afternoon in Milan sitting on comfortable benches of the pavillion of Qatar: the power of Expo!