"I went over and found someone I knew from the old days at San Siro in Milano."
Leonardo horse milano - Credit: goatling
During his convalescence in Italy, following the injuries sustained in World War I (see 'Bookmark' for page 12), Hemingway became quite familiar with the San Siro racetrack
-- next to which stands Leonardo da Vinci
's imposing bronze statue, imago equus
. There, just outside of Milan, Ernest met 'a number of American and British jockeys who lived permanently in Europe.' According to Michael Reynolds, 'the honesty of these races was sometimes questionable, but Ernest learned his way around the track, listened to the touts spiel and mastered the betting game.' (Michael Reynolds, Hemingway the Paris Years
, New York and London: W. W. Norton and Company, 1999, p. 32). The idea of the 'fixed race' would again be a theme that was played out in Hemingway's subsequent writings.