Anti Covid vaccine, in the maxi-hub of the Palazzo delle Scintille the last kiss before the dose, then a tour of Citylife

“Staying here all afternoon will hear of every”. One of the two Alpine troops who guard gate A is attentive and curious to the little stories that arise there outside the Palazzo delle Scintille, between the vaccinated candidates in the queue and the companions of friends and relatives. He’s right. At 2.30 pm, there is none in a row and those who arrived early take advantage of it for a tour of the Citylife shops. “Where is the exit? That my friend here has entered but he is scared …”. Laughs Marcello, 63, who came to accompany Marco for 43 years. “It was as white as mozzarella … here it is.” His friend laughs too, now that he’s vaccinated. Immediately behind him comes a girl, a bright smile and a band-aid in plain sight on her right shoulder. Call someone on the phone. “All right! I made Pfizer … No, they don’t let you choose … but they are quick, not even half an hour”.

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The reserved arrive in waves, but the queue is not created before 3.30 pm, when the tables of the restaurants set up under the three towers are now half-empty. “Can’t I do it right now?” says a pensioner to the other Alpine who only allows those who have the code to enter. “No, you have to make the appointment first.” A lady arrives out of breath: “Listen, I just need some information. That is, it is for my daughter who is doing her high school graduation”. The two green hats with the pen exchange a glance. The lady insists: “Isn’t it that I could get her to do the single-dose? I explain to her, now she has to study, but then she will go on a trip to Spain, and if there is a recall … how does she do it? Johnson & Johnson would be better, or know exactly when he will be able to take his first dose. ” “Madam, but you have to call or look on the Internet, you can’t ask for information here.”

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At gate B you go slightly slower because there are two lines for vaccinations instead of three. Between the two entrances is the exit, where the companions are stationed. Cell phone in hand, short jeans, tight tank tops, black and white masks, baseball caps, headphones in the ears, tattoos in sight. Common traits of Milanese a little crumpled, with a head full of thoughts and perhaps less attentive to style than in the spring of two years ago. “Inside is my wife, I have already taken Pfizer in via Novara. She had a cataract operation to do and therefore she preferred to wait a bit”, explains Antonio, 74, a patient gentleman. On average it is thirty minutes of waiting which for others is an eternity. “The point is that she doesn’t want to be AstraZenaca – explains Marco 42, from Cornaredo, who is also expecting his wife – not so much out of fear … yes of course, we have heard a lot, but the real problem is the call. do you have to do it in August, when we go on vacation? “.

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Worried, bored, impatient. Man of indefinable age, short-sleeved T-shirt with a pink flamingo and the words “Camargue”, greets his partner: “If you want to go for a walk to the shops while you wait for me …”. “Yes, ok but when you’re done call”. The second stop after the puncture are in fact the shops: the profit of the vaccine, combined with the pleasure of shopping. And a walk in the countryside. “It’s our first real spring weekend, come to think of it,” say Luca and Luana, 30, under clusters of dark clouds from which enough light still filters. Not far away, on the green lawn of the Citylife gardens it almost seems like an Olympics is taking place: frisbee, badminton, football, dance, tools, relaxation on the grass. Girls with bright lipstick wink sweetly from above the masks, facing the camera lens of a smartphone holding their friend. In the background, cruise ships, another symbol of the neighborhood.

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The Alpine troops, on the other hand, are always there, doing the little (but tiring) filter that is needed to reject those who seem to have arrived from the moon. “Ah, but you needed a reservation?”. The line gets longer, the sky gets darker. “Last week I did the tour of Italy, today I’m here … and tomorrow I’m going to the mountains. Otherwise it’s worse than a job”, says one of the two Alpini with the phosphorescent vest guarding gate B. A couple in their 50s kiss there, just before entering. They linger for several minutes. She smiles but is nervous. They kiss again, she doesn’t make up her mind to enter. “Don’t worry madam! I tell you: everything will be fine”.

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