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I love Italy

 
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2005 7:48 pm    Post subject: I love Italy Reply with quote

I'm having a wonderful time in Italy so far. Milan was great for shopping, but not much for sightseeing. Venice was right out of a dream. Most of the Venetians speak French and English, and are extremely hospitable in the hotels and restaurants. Our waiter at one restaurant invited us to come back for drinks so we could chat about his experience working in South Africa and our travels around the world. Tuscany driving is treacherous, but the people are also laid back and kind. I stopped a woman in Florence today, asking for directions to the Accademia. She walked me over to it, and we spoke in English so she could practice. She was a librarian, and she took English lessons last year. At the end of the walk, we went through a list of all our favorite American authors --- F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemmingway, Henry James, Mark Twain, Raymond Carver --- and gave shared praise for Anton Chekov's short stories. Italians have truly touched my heart!
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Deste



Joined: 17 Aug 2005
Posts: 307
Location: Far, far away

PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2005 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HP: Grazie mille!!!! for writing this enthusiastic message! Your happiness makes me smile.
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madameshawshank



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Penrith (where jacarandas remind me of change), New South Wales, Australia

PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2005 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

and it's quite obvious that you have touched theirs! what a journey soul you are...
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2005 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One other note about the warmth of Italians. Italy was the only country I've been to so far, where people are warm enough and friendly enough to let you take pictures of them or their children. One time, I was walking back to my car in Arezzo (Tuscany) and there was a small family walking in front of me. The baby boy the mother was holding was looking over his mother's shoulder at me, and the baby and I kept smiling at each other. I pulled out my camera and took a picture of him, but with all the movement, it wasn't a good picture. The mother saw me with my camera and I asked "Posso fare lei una photo?" and she graciously replied "Si! Si!" and stopped so I could get a good shot of her son. I said to the baby "Bello bambino!" and he laughed! It's a great shot and a wonderful memory.

Another time, I was eating in a restaurant in Trastavere in Rome and this Italian family on vacation with two children were sitting at the table across from me. The little boy (about 5 years old) kept playing hide and seek with me --- everytime I looked at him, he would duck under the back of his seat. Eventually the little girl (about 7) started playing with her dad's HUGE camera and wanted to take pictures. I took a picture of the little girl taking a picture with this huge camera, and showed the digital image to the mother. I then asked her in Italian if I could take another picture of her children, and she said yes. My digital camera has a nice zoom feature where you can enlarge parts of the pictures you take. I showed her the pictures I took of her children and zoomed in on their lovely faces for her to see. She said they were beautiful pictures. I asked her for her email address so I could send them to her. After I paid for my meal and headed out back to my hotel, the mother told her children that I was leaving and they all yelled out "Ciao! Ciao!" as I left. I yelled back "Ciao bella! Ciao bello!"

Another time, I was waiting in line to use the ATM on the street in Rome. An Italian woman stopped me and asked me how you say hello in my language. (I'm of Chinese and Japanese descent, but I was born in America.) I told how to say hello in Chinese (it's a lot shorter and easier than Japanese) and she repeated the phrase with me to get the pronunciation down. She then thanked me and it was my turn to use the ATM. We both left smiling.

I just can't say enough good things about Italians. I had so many good interactions like this, and over the course of two weeks, just one or two rude encounters. I hope I don't offend too many Europeans on C&Z, but to me, Italy really is the heart of Europe.

NOTE: I learned a little bit of Italian for this trip, so when I said I "spoke" in Italian, it was just a few memorized phrases and some things I read out of my Italian phrase book.
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happenstance



Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2005 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a wonderful trip you are on. I love italy. My partner Cody and I a went in 2003 and spent nearly a month there. The night before we left, I started bawling because I did not want to leave.

I loved Rome, especially Trastavere.

We had a magical week in Umbria at an amazing agroturismo called Country House Montali, hidden in the hills above Lago Trasimeno, not too far from Perugia. Malu and Alberto run it and are fantastic people cooking the best food I have EVER had anywhere. I know we will go back one day.

Parma. The cheese. The architecture. The people. I fell in love with that city.

Thanks for sharing and letting me relive a little of our trip.

Ciao Bella!
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VictoriaLH



Joined: 17 May 2005
Posts: 87
Location: Madison WI

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We just returned from 2 weeks in Positano, and after 6 years of going there, we have made so many friends! We were kiss-kissed by so many people when they saw we had returned, and lavished with buon viaggio gifts when we left. Yes, they are such warm people, and that coupled with glorious vistas and fabulous food, you just can't go wrong!
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Euridice



Joined: 07 Nov 2005
Posts: 19
Location: Italy

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2005 12:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

=) This made me so happy. I'm Italian, and I'm so glad to hear something different from the usual sterotypes about eating spaghetti, speaking loudly, mafia and whatnot. Probably I met people with superficial judgements before you all!
Rome is one of my favorite cities ever. The people indeed are very friendly there.. They get a bit colder as you go North.
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happenstance



Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2005 7:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Euridice, Bravo for posting. It is hard to believe that anyone would still think those things about your beautiful country. I guess that is why travel is such a good thing. All those stereotypes and preconceptions are broken down.

What part of La Bella Italia are you from? I can't wait to get back.

Ciao for now,
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Sharing her home with Rimsky the cat, Cody the partner, and 9 happy hens.

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Leo



Joined: 25 Nov 2005
Posts: 94
Location: New Zealand

PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2005 7:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sì, gli italiani sono molto gentili.
Italy is a wonderful country with warm and spirited people. Any seeming coarseness is only pride, and maybe stubborness.
I once, in jest, said it was inherent but someone mistakenly thought I said "inherited". Now we joke about it being genetic.
My favourite thing (of course) is the attitude toward family, food and eating. That and soft polenta (frascatole in dialect).
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Miss Piggott



Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 14
Location: Italy (Rome - Turin)

PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your nice words, harpospeaking.
Being Italian, and a Southerner, I'm used to hear the worst about my folk...
And I'm happy you had a positive experience in Rome. Most foreigners find the Romans to be loud and obnoxious (as an Australian guy once said on a travels forum) but having lived in this wonderful city for 7 years I have a completely different experience.
I've been adopted by Rome, and by the Romans as well. I find them to be open and warm, and very funny.
I'm going to move to Turin, and my heart is broken by the mere thought of leaving this city. Crying or Very sad
Next time you visit Italy le me know it, we could meet up somewhere. Razz
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Euridice



Joined: 07 Nov 2005
Posts: 19
Location: Italy

PostPosted: Tue Jan 10, 2006 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MIss Piggot: I used to live in Rome as a child, and I moved to Turin some years ago as well!
It's quite different from Rome here- certainly more narrow and cold, but I learnt to love it after a while. It's more cozy and you get to know the whole town, without getting lost in the huge chaotic heaven that is Rome (It's still one of my favorite cities)
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Miss Piggott



Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 14
Location: Italy (Rome - Turin)

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Euridice, would you like to meet up?
It would be great knowing each other, exchanging recipes, cooking together...
Would you? Smile
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