My goodness, this trip was an exercise in understanding luxury. Luxury that I will never, ever have unless I marry rich, which honestly looks a bit unlikely at this point. I’ve never really been one for cars. Don’t understand the nuances that really get some engines going, if you’ll forgive the joke. Having some experience with art, however, I can definitely appreciate a sexy line, and damn, these cars have some seriously sexy lines.
Friday before last I spent the day exploring the two Ferrari museums in Modena and Maranello. It was nice to get out of the rain and explore the origins of some of the world’s most famous cars. As a semi-chaperone, I got to go along with the Family Business class at my university, as I hadn’t thought of any way to go on my own. Fortunately, the students were well-behaved and I didn’t have to yell at anybody. Not that it’s my business, doing that, since I wasn’t actually in charge of anything, but I find that I’m incredibly impatient when it comes to simple instructions. If you’re to arrive at a location at 7:45 (leaving at 8:00), it is most certainly not acceptable to arrive at bloody 8:30. Honestly, if I hear one more person complain about “not being treated like an adult”, I will burn something because if you don’t behave like an adult, you won’t be treated like one, for sure.
The first museum we visited was where Enzo Ferrari was actually born. Apparently there’s some sordid history about how he sold the family business after his father’s death to get the money for racing cars (actual racing, not building) and left his mother destitute, but of course the official story isn’t going to include anything about that. The museum itself was interesting with all sorts of mementos from Enzo’s life, like his journals, pairs of glasses, and the first trophies his Ferrari cars ever won. The origin of the prancing horse emblem was also explained as coming from an Italian WWI hero’s fighter planes, entrusted to Ferrari by the pilot’s mother after the hero’s death.
There were definitely some beautiful cars on display. How can there not be when such a rich history offers the opportunity for private collectors to latch onto something as opulent as the Ferrari brand? We learned that Enzo often destroyed old models when the newest car rolled into purchasing order, so it is thanks to those private collectors that some of these cars were available for viewing. However, the Formula 1 race cars were all mercifully intact from the years Ferrari took home the wins, even the one that looked like the Chitti-Chitti Bang-Bang car. That one was pretty awesome but my favorite, by far, was the newest model that came out for this year, a limited edition car that sold out the entirety of its 499-car stock before the design was even revealed. Damn, those curves, man.
Feel free to peruse the photo gallery below as you like. Plenty of cars to go around for everyone’s exacting taste. Just a bunch of metal chunks that none of us can afford. Well, I certainly can’t. If you can, we should be friends. Wink wink, nudge nudge. One thing that bummed me out when we were visiting was the weather. Ugly and gray and wet. It guaranteed that none of us, students or “adults, could test drive any of the cars for the promised €70. I can’t drive stick, which would have eliminated me regardless, but I wouldn’t mind learning in a Ferrari! 😉