On Location: Bergamo

Bergamo Square

The beautiful Piazza in Bergamo with my adorable Italian sister Emma. I am tilting my head to show where my Italian dad proposed to my Italian mother.

After a long day of chasing 50 rugrats from scavenger hunts to Iced Lolly snack breaks there is nothing better than coming home to a hug from an Italian mother who has a warm meal and washing machine at the ready. Between evening bike rides, pizza dinners with the Jet Set crew and World Cup viewings at the local pub I have not actually had a free moment to get my clothes in the wash and I am one day away from wearing a bathing suit bottom, but I take comfort knowing that I have a home here waiting for me.

My “dad” owns a restaurant with his two brothers and it is closed Tuesdays so that is my parents’ date night. This week they brought me along for an outing to the beautiful Bergamo, a mountain town just at the foothills of the Alps.

The way up

The way up: to get up to Bergamo (in the Alps) you have to take this trolley, called a funicular, up the mountain. It's a scenic ride.

My mom — who is fluent in English — told me a story about a great knight named Calliones (cal – ee- own -ehs) who won so many battles everybody told him he must have an extra pair of balls (my mom did have trouble finding the right word for balls here so I had to help here out and it was awkward). In honor of the great knight, the city sculpted a set of three balls into the iron gate at the church. People come and rub the balls in hopes that they will have the same strength heroic strength of Callienes. Thus — according to my mother but no Googleable sources — was born the Italian phrase “big Cajones like Calliones.”


I had to rub Calliones' cajones just in case the legends are true

My Italian Fam

My Italian Fam


About sistersbailey

We are Perrin and Sarah Bailey, collectively known as “The Sisters Bailey”. The moniker was born out of a crazy weekend at the 2009 New Orleans Jazz Fest and it was the first time we had ever been referred to as one unit. We grew up in Alexandria, VA together and then separated for college - Perrin to The University of Pennsylvania and Sarah to Northwestern University – and somehow landed together in New York after graduation. It was in the midst of the hustle of Manhattan that we became friends for the first time in years. Somehow we landed jobs in the same industry - Sarah worked in marketing at HBO and Perrin managed creative digital promotions for her media agency’s main client, Disney - just three blocks from one another. One day we decided to leave our jobs, sell our belongings and travel abroad with a backpack and a collective savings of $10K. The stories of our continuing adventures and those of other fearless travelers are here to inspire you.
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