Life in Roma – Day 3 (the start of my habitation experiment!)

4 Feb

I write this sat in my gorgeous apartment in Monti, an area of Rome that is capturing my heart more every second longer that I am here. It’s a beautiful spring morning here, and despite the temperature, you could be convinced that it was summer if you looked out the window! My apartment is…amazing! Set in a 16th Century palazzo, it’s a 2 minute walk from the Colleseum, my most favourite thing in the world! The views inside the apartment look over the internal courtyard of the palazzo, and within moments of arriving, we heard some guy singing his heart out in Italian…I have since established that this is my neighbour, who I walk past every time I am coming/going. I have called him ‘Piano man’ as he sits in the window of his apartment playing the piano, night and day.

I arrived in Rome on Saturday after a glorious flight which ended bumpy as we flew into the storm that was plaguing the Eternal  City…joy…rain! Welcome to Italy! Accompanied by the parents, we took our taxi to the apartment, met the owner, ran through the basics and buona, all was well! Our first night in Rome was spent having dinner with my lovely boy…perfetto!

So, this morning (Monday) the parents left early for Fiumicino, and here I remain, alone in Rome. One thing that I realised this morning as I was walking about taking in the fresh air, is just how at home I feel here…nothing feels strange or ‘holiday-ish’. But then it never has, not since my first visit here in June 2012.

Today for me has been about finding my feet…I know the area well, but it’s nice to walk about and not feel like a tourist. I must have avoided looking like one today as I had many “giornos” from locals I passed in the cobbled streets. Not that there is anything wrong with being a tourist in Rome, but I am passed that now. This city will become my home shortly and it needs to feel like that.

So, a round up of the last 48 hours in Roma:

  • Even in the rain, I love this city
  • Spending time with my parents here was wonderful and I’m glad they can see why I love this city as much as I do
  • Italians are charming, and I find myself especially comforted when I pass a priest or nun in the street (just to point out, I’m not remotely religious, but the abundance of Ava Maria in this city is hard to escape…in the end you find yourself comforted by her image or representatives!)
  • My first food shop was a success…wine, pasta, meats and cheeses! So much for a healthy diet!
  • Italy beat France in their first game of the Six Nations! Result!

And a final note on negative stereotypes…
Anyone that knows me well enough will know that one of my biggest hates is the Dolmio adverts you get on TV in the UK. Grotty, mass-produced “Italian” cooking sauces that are vile beyond beliefe, sold by an advertising campaign that sounds like ‘The Italian man who went to Malta’…yet without the humour. So, you can imagine my response when people speak negatively of Italians. I have spent a lot of time in Italy; not just Rome, but all over, and am yet to meet an Italian that makes me think less of them. Italians (all Italians!) are charming, interesting, stylish and polite…and they have the best attitude towards life. Italian men seem to get a particularly hard time…yes, granted, there are some mega sleazy Italian men out there (I hadn’t been out the house more that 15 minutes and had about 5 Italian men hissing, whistling and commenting as I walked by) but there are no more here than you would find in London. In fact, I have met far sleazier English men in London! – but that’s the culture here…its harmless!) Going on my own personal experience, Italian men are wonderful, traditiaonal guys. I’m yet to meet one that fills the role of this sleazy stereotype. And my Italian is the finest of them all! So, if you have a bad experience with an Italian guy, they do not represent the entire Italian male population.

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