Como, Lago di
After a few days in boiling hot and deserted Bologna, we decided to head to the hills for my mom's last few days in Italy. The most convenient place with available accommodations was Como, the town at the south end of Lake Como. The Airbnb had a strange college-themed decor that really offended Ambika, but what bothered me were the low ceilings that I kept whacking with my head.
For a few days, Ambika and my mom explored Como together while I stayed home to get some work done. They went to a silk museum where they were gifted little cocoons of raw silk with a dead worm rattling around inside.
One day we took a lake ferry to Bellaggio. Unlike Como, it was stuffed with tourists and hot, so we swum in the lake. On our way down to the ferry back, I overheard two lady shopkeeps discussing the most serious business of the day - trading recipes: "un po de olio, un patate, salmone, perfetto!"
The ferry ride back was the best part of the day. We saw all the little towns along the lake and watched the sun set over the mountains. We had sneaked out some bread from a Bellagio restaurant and my mom bought olive oil chocolate which melted, so on the ferry we dipped the bread in the chocolate.
Back in Como, we took the funicular to the top of a mountain that is capped with Alessandro Volta's sci-fi lighthouse. We ate at a nice little restaurant without a view and had mushroom pastas, tartare and the best panna cotta of my life, topped with little crunchies and amaretto.