Curiosities of Italian Life
Formalities -- Italy used to be very formal in many ways. It still has the reputation of being formal compared to American life. There would be tons of things I could say here and tell you, but for one, there are always table cloths on tables. And that is just one of the formalities here (though a nice one, especially considering the delicious food and wine you eat here.....more delicious formalities, not bad at all)
Travel agencies.....are suffering here! With all the internet connections for travel, you don't need one to go places. You just click in Italy and hotels, hostels, bed and breakfasts, farm houses... and you can find everything you want by yourself. Is tourism suffering here? I would say so, but then, I am not the expert. I do know that yesterday the mountain town Norcia was filled with tourists.
BOOTS or sandals.....summertime. But that doesn't mean that girls and women don't wear boots! They do! Mostly the young girls, with shorts or skirts. But in this heat, who wants to wear boots when you can wear sandals! It's fashion, and fashion means that even boots are in, so....young girls, take your pick, feel hot or cold. It's your choice!
ARE ITALIANS LOUD? Well.....as soon as you get to the airport, from any other country, you can always tell the Italians from the rest. They are usually loud, sort of make a scene in some way (in the way they dress, quite flamboyant at airports usually, with new tennis shoes, or a hat, or loud accessories). Hate to generalize, but after our trip to Berlin, I could easily spot the Italians in white framed eyeglasses, chunky jewelry, more make-up than the women in Berlin. And yes, they do talk louder than the rest...sorry, but true.
A clean purse.....basically, inside my purse, there is a lot of confusion...always. Papers, receipts, lipstick and carrying case (sometimes in it sometimes not), wallet, little objects, a little notebook...yes, my purse is not very neat. BUT I don't throw things onto the ground, ever! No papers, no plastic, no bottles or cans, chewing gum, nothing. And THIS is something, sorry to say, that Italians do quite a lot. Women's purses are neater, because the bits of papers, etc, are just sort of "tossed" out....onto the streets if there are no trashcans around. Sad, but true.
Ice cream....is so so good in Italy. Especially Sicilian ice cream! I just discovered a place yesterday where the flavors, and the pieces of fruit in the icecream and the flavors are so so good!! Maybe it would have been best that I didn't discover this place.....
TV -- there are still those families that like to eat lunch (from 1pm or 1.30 or 2 -- for about half an hour or more) and watch tv at the same time. I personally don't like to do that at all!! Actually I don't like TV, and don't watch it much. Italian TV isn't very good, much better in the UK.
PROBLEMS....even though there are zillions of problems in this country (political, economical, personal between different groups, races, religions, philosophies of life) I feel that Italy is a pretty wonderful country. This, because of the historical buildings and marvelous views, great food, and loads of culture... everywhere you look, drive or walk.
SHUTTERS - what is so interesting about this topic? LIGHT! We sleep in the dark....and in the morning, the shutters get opened. In California I remember sleeping in rooms with so much light...in the mornng I would often awaken with the light. Not here in Italy, dark dark dark until you decide you want the sun to come pouring in....
Cellphones - so many people have them here! And they like to get the latest models. All ages have them, and I am pretty sure that Italy exceeds the number of cellphones, has the largest number of cellphone users, or at least, is way up on the top....because in Italy, making an image statement is very important! (not that I personally like it, but that is how it is here in Italy)
Text by Sonia Tardetti for Abode Srl