Saturday, October 4, 2008

Italy on my mind

Brad and I are heading to Rome in three days.

It's the first time for both of us in Europe so we're totally excited. I think we've both been on buying sprees for everything from new jeans to new boxer briefs to even a new fabulous Tumi upright. What does the sophisticated American wear in October in Italy?

Thank goodness, we live in an Italian ancestry-heavy part of California. Just this evening, we hit a hip birthday/housewarming party at Dana and Dan's house- pretty much Little Italy of the Peninsula. Everyone there, at least on Dana's side of the family had their own lovely story of the wonders we're about to enjoy. Multiple generations of Italian mothers and daughters with at least one father and son. A good time was had by all.

Brad is half Italian and half Irish while I'm pretty much Irish and mutt. Brad's mother was a DiBennedetti.

We didn't really have too many Italians in Forest City when I was growing up. We only had the movies and TV to tell us what Italian-Americans were like- not always flattering. I imagined that they all had Bronx accents and ate only pasta with red wine.

My experiences here in California have given me a broader perspective. Here are my observations:

Italian Americans are fun. They love to laugh. They love to cry (especially Erin when she's had a few cocktails...LOL). The love to argue and they love to make up.

The men are good at conversation. The women are strong, beautiful and funny (e.g. Dana, Marilyn and Erin). They all have opinions, and will defend them to the death, but they respect your right to defend yours to the death.

They have great skin, which makes them look younger than they really are. Or maybe they look younger because they act young and know how to laugh.

You can feel the passion about Italy. You can sense that there's a pride in identifying with a culture that is so rich and has contributed so much to the world in terms of art, style, and amore.

It's really exciting to think about visiting the place that brought us fine wine, great food, sleek fashion and Italian Americans.

If it's half as wonderful as was described tonight, I may not want to come home.

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