Thursday, November 4, 2010
I started this blog as a way to share my experience of living in Italy. My intention was to provide an honest portrayal of my life here as a way to give people insight into what it is actually like to live here. I wanted to include the positives and the negatives as a way to perhaps deflate the general stereotype people tend to have of Italy; that everything is beautiful, everyday is wonderful, and that every meal is the best of my life. So far, I have failed. So far this blog has been entirely slanted towards the beautiful and the postive. From today on, I would like to try and give a rounder, fuller picture of my life. So here it goes...
After living here for over a year, I feel confident to make the following conclusion (of course this is based solely on my own experiences and I fully trust that others will conclude the exact opposite or at least something different - but this is mine): life, in general, in the US is much easier, less complicated and more convenient than it is here. In fact, often times here it seems like they have sought out the most difficult way to do something and decided that is how the thing shall be done.
Today I went to the local pool to find out information about the possibility of going there to swim laps. I found out the times and the price (89 euros for 1 month or for 10 times - a little steep, I think, but I can live with it) - everything was going fine UNTIL I was told that I would need a doctor's certificate to swim there unless, of course, I would like to pay 13 euros (by today's conversion that is $18.50) per time. What? I could accept the need for a physical when I was playing junior high school basketball but I am a grown adult! I think I can swim at my own risk. A doctor's visit would probably cost around 120 euros! Plus I don't even have a general doctor so I would have to find one, make an appointment and take time off of work to go to the appointment.
And there is no hope of gaining any sympathy from an Italian upon sharing this story because for them it is totally normal. It is just the way it is.
Needless to say I do not think I will be swimming anytime soon. In fact, now I am drinking a glass of wine to console myself and later I might just have to make some brownies. In total, the complete opposite of my original intentions of getting some exercise.
(the picture is originally from this website)