Thanks to Kelly, Jasmine and Kristie for the wonderful idea of setting up a link for bloggers who love Italy! The first topic is ‘my Italy connection’, so here’s my Italia story. If you too are a blogger or vlogger click here for the link up and share your story too, what can be better than joining a community of Italy lovers?! Now I’m going to pour myself a prosecco or two and enjoy reading the other stories, cin cin! #dolcevitabloggers
La Brutta Figura: My Italia story
Italia, like an elegant grandmother, came into my life early on and began to impart her wisdom to me. Her first lesson was probably food – given the choice for what to have for dinner I would invariably opt for a butchered Italian classic like risotto with chicken or, gasp, spaghetti Bolognese with accompanying garlic bread (who knew 8-year-old me already knew how to fare la scarpetta?!). Then came my introduction to the world of her coffee, her cheeses, to a sip of wine here and there. Luckily my parents’ love of Italy meant I got to meet Italia in the flesh early on, from a stay in a damp apartment in Venice where I could lean out the window and watch the gondoliers, to a tiny hamlet in Tuscany where I saw my first snake. As I grew older Italia became more like a seductress. I was desperate to learn the language at school, to use words you can roll around your tongue like tasting wine. When I finally began to appreciate her art, I was well and truly head over heels.
As I contemplated moving to Italy over three years ago, the question was not so much ‘should I go’, but ‘how soon can I go’. With all this amorous preparation it’s not surprising that it took me only a couple of months to find my amore here in Italy (could he be any more Italian in this photo?!).
Of course, as with any long term relationship, Italia and I have had our hiccups. Dealing with bureaucracy, residency, and banks nearly broke us up, and the acidity of disapproving stares from old ladies is sure to provoke an argument. But then Italia reminds me that here it’s acceptable to buy five litre bottles of vino sfuso and I am placated.
It was a pharmacy in San Gimignano that illuminated exactly why I keep crawling back to Italia after any argument. Sure, the pizza, the wine, the Vespe, are all great reasons to love Italy, but as I walked into this pharmacy to buy very unpoetic blister plasters, I found myself facing clean white desks and rows of industrial boxes of medicine all presided over by a medieval frescoed saint on the wall above, and I realized that if a bloody pharmacy in Italy has a fresco, then it really is the only country that can truly claim to be il bel paese. What’s your connection to Italy? Why do you love Italia? Let me know in the comments!
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