Anna Maria, a tall Italian lady in her forties and our tour guide, waved us into a bright red bus driven by a burly Carlo—the only man I've trusted with my life after he's downed countless glasses of wine on a narrow mountain road. The Italian passion for speed was evident as we whizzed on the highways. Having said that, what surprised me—and pleasantly so—was that motorists stopped to give way to pedestrians even when there were no zebra crossings. Coming from India where it stands for little other than a pattern to break the asphalt monotony, it was intriguing. I did tempt fate before a few speeding cars—that I've lived to tell the tale is proof the Milanese know when to hit the brakes.