Panini Girl

My obsessions-Italy and Cooking

January 4, 2010


I Think I Know What’s Up With Italy

I know I have friends who don’t understand my “thing” with Italy. I try to explain it to them, but they get that glazed over look in their eyes after a few minutes. You know how it is hearing about someone else’s vacation. What I should say is “just go and you’ll see for yourself.”

Somedays I think “am I really crazy having such strong feelings about a place that is so far away?”. For a brief moment I think “I can live without it, without planning a trip, without dreaming about it, without stepping off the plane onto Italian soil.” That feeling lasts about 30 seconds and then I start doing more research, finding more places off the beaten path to explore.

So what is it?

Cappuccino-perfection in a cup.
Eating salami on a roll for breakfast.
The pasticceria-the most incredible variety of little bites, each more delectable than the last.
Style-I might not have it, but I can sure appreciate seeing it.
Cypress trees lining country roads.
An appreciation and respect for older people and a genuine love of little kids too.
Art everywhere, not only in the museums of the cities, but in just about every church in every town.
And what about church bells-there’s nothing like lying in bed and hearing them chime (except if it’s 1 am and there still ringing around!).
Gardens with vegetables growing on even the smallest patch of land.
Olive oil-need I say more?
And I suppose this is the perfect place to say “vino”!
Honest food made with the fresh, simple ingredients.
Can you say “formaggio”? Cheese-oh my God!
The architecture-centuries of it, still standing, still being lived in.
Shutters that you can close at night and make the room really dark.
Sagras-festivals celebrating just about every food product.
Gelato-on an every day basis.
The passeggiata-grab a loved one and stroll through town in the late afternoon/early evening.
Pizza in all its forms.
Truffles, if you’re lucky, and fresh porcini.
History around every corner.
The most romantic language-like music to your ears.
The Italian people-so gracious and full of emotion!

So much more, but I’m out of time. Go and see for yourself.


6 thoughts on “I Think I Know What’s Up With Italy

  1. OMG – you hit every single point which tugs at my heart strings and makes me want to jump on a plane right now and head for ITALY!!!! I, too, feel exactly like you. Every moment there is magic…there is so much to see, taste, hear, smell, touch and LIVE around each and every corner!!! But, when I think of reality, I wonder if it’s perhaps because we don’t live there that we love it so much – it’s a treat to go there…if we were there all the time, all these things would be taken for granted!! Who knows (but I would be willing to find out!!)

    When are we going???

  2. A wonderful list! So true! These are all the magical things we miss. And so the countdown begins…

  3. What a great list! A nice way to try to capture one’s love for Italy. We feel the same way.

  4. Loved your list (esp those church bells)

    I agree its hard to explain the “enchantment” of Italy to people that have not been there. We are hooked – and have been since ’90. Though we are very grateful to have had so many trips there since, we would love to stay for at least 3 months or more! Our longest stay has been a month, renting an apartment or house.

    Ultimately, it is a very “feeling” place, which is what I believe is the most captivating quality about it, esp for the “to do” list cultures. I’ve seen many people show up there with long must – see places lists, and find them lingering later in a cafe for hours, “wasting” precious museum time.

  5. I love Italy like I love art, food, books, breathing, my family…it’s a place where as soon as I stepped off the train in Perugia, I was just speechless. I tell everyone that the light in in Italy is like nothing I’ve ever seen before. I’ve lived in Paris for five years, Sweden for four years, been all over Western Europe and am now in Seoul, but Italy remains in my heart like no other city. Paris is my second home, but Italy, ITALY! LOL.
    I had a meeting with a client this afternoon and she said that she’s thinking about taking a vacation in Italy. I hopped online and found your blog. She loves it, I’m loving it, keep up the great work.


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