...was a Renaissance sculptor who worked in Italy and was heavily influenced by Michelangelo.  Surprisingly, given his name and that he was responsible for the city's most famous artwork, he wasn't born in Bologna.  He wasn't even Italian. Born in what was then a part of Flanders, but now sits in France he was named … Continue reading Giambologna


Blame Game

Emilia-Romagna, the administrative region of Italy of which Bologna is the capital, is the richest, at least going by per capita income.  With Christmas looming large when I visited there was plenty of that income being exchanged,  especially in some of the more exclusive shopping locations.  Capitalism is alive and well.  Hardly surprising since we … Continue reading Blame Game

Bologna Jazz

I mentioned in an earlier post the origins of the Portico Quartet's name, and really where else could they have been to acquire that moniker, for apart from the city's architectural signature it has hosted an annual jazz festival since 1958, making it even older than me! The city loves jazz.  On the Sunday that … Continue reading Bologna Jazz

It’s The Real Thing

In the UK the coffee market is booming. According to a report in the Financial Times last year we consume 1.7bn takeaway coffees each year from 18,000 retail outlets, and it seems we haven't reached saturation point.  Gregg's (the bakers) and JD Wetherpoon (the pub chain) want our custom too and it's expected that in … Continue reading It’s The Real Thing

No Churchgoer

I used to be. I used to go religiously. That isn't strictly true; I went for the music and the ceremony, and what little faith I had evaporated when my first marriage ended, in much the same way as my status in that community evaporated at the same time. Still, I probably went to church … Continue reading No Churchgoer

Back. To Bologna.

So in what appears to be an annual event, I distract myself from the bitterness of another festive season on my own by opting for a few days in Italy. Not Venice this time, nor any of the other Italian favourites I've visited over the years, but to the city of Bologna about which I … Continue reading Back. To Bologna.