With the end of the Global Perspectives visit we had some time to see Lugano on Thursday afternoon. A short boat ride on Lake Lugano revealed the beauty of the area and was quite relaxing. We returned to the hotel and met some folks for dinner in the town center. We found a casual place on a quiet square where we shared in pizza, insalada misto and pasta stuffed with spinach and cheese. We strolled back along the lake and had some delicious gelato. The Olympic Opening Ceremony was starting and we headed to our rooms to watch.
Saturday was a time to explore the nearby town of Bellinzona, a 30 minute train ride away. We strolled through the open air market area, a mixture of food stalls of cheese, bread, fruit, and meats as well as clothing and jewelry. Bellinzona is also known for 3 castles and after taking a few wrong turns we found the path to the first. After a a 30 minute climb upwards we reached the first castle and were treated to a great view of the area and the other castles. We also ran into the students from Virginia Tech. It is small world. After a rest we headed back down to search for the path to the second castle and trekked upwards once again. Another nice view and back down to street level where we found a restaurant for a lunch of insalada caprese and 4 cheese gnocchi.
Now back at the hotel and preparing to leave for Zurich tomorrow and our return to the US. It has been an invigorating educational experience with fellow graduate deans. I look forward to sharing my experience with my colleagues and students from FSU. I thank Karen DePauw again for sharing this with us. The passion she has for students and graduate education is special. Safe travels to all.