lifestyle, photography, Places

7 reasons why you’ll love Italy in autumn.

2016-09-25 • By

Italy in autumn is at its best. Here’s some reasons why you should visit Italy in autumn.

You might think how is it to visit Italy in autumn. When I was younger I didn’t like autumn. Holiday end and it’s time to go back to school or work. September was like the real beginning of the year. It bore the anxiety of what you were supposed to do in the next months. Wake me up when September ends.

But than things change and you start to appreciate what you didn’t like before. Now I can honestly say autumn is my favourite season. Living here I can say that Italy in autumn is at its best.

Italy in autumn

So here’s some reasons why you should visit Italy in autumn.

Weather is nearly perfect for visiting cities.

Summer is normally really hot. That’s nice if you are going to stay on the beach, but it can be unpleasant to walk all day long around in Rome, Florence or Venice. Plan to come in autumn in Italy if you are going to visit cities. It’s possible you’ll find some bad weather sometimes, but it’s generally pleasantly warm in the day. I personally prefer use the umbrella sometimes than walking all day with 30 celsius degrees and more. The most you go South the most you’re still in time to stay on the beach in September, October and even November. In Sicily and Puglia they always point out how they’re still bathing in the sea when we have foggy days here in Milan.

Places

Where to stay in Venice. Three days in San Polo.

2016-09-18 • By

The streets around Campo San Polo are a perfect base to discover the Serenissima.

Are you wandering where to stay in Venice?

Consider the area around San Polo, one of Venice’s sextiers. Venice is divided in six districts, they are called sextiers indeed. The streets around Campo San Polo are good place where to stay in Venice. The area is a little less crowded than St. Mark sextier and Campo San Polo is no more than five- ten minutes walking far away from Rialto. Rialto is in San polo district indeed, but of course is one of the most crowded and expensive areas where to stay in Venice. Moreover, being in a central position you can easily reach the sextiers like Cannaregio and Dorsoduro to find less touristic and expensive bars and restaurants. Well, provided that in Venice prices are relatively high everywhere.

Riva degli Schiavoni da Palazzo Ducale #Venice

Una foto pubblicata da Paola Marzorati (@paolamar22) in data:

books, people

Italian books: the almond picker

2016-09-11 • By

Italian books. My review of the “the almond picker” by British-Sicilian novelist Simonetta Agnello Hornby.

After Elena Ferrante and Andrea Camilleri are you still searching in the Italian books shelf? Today I’m reccomending The Almond Picker by Simonetta Agnello Hornby. Actually I wouldn’t put it among the Italian books. Its place is in the Sicilian books shelf, if there was one. “La Mennulara” is not an Italian word, is the Sicilian way to call female workers who picked almonds from ground after men had beaten the trees.

La Mennulara, The Almond Picker, is the nickname of the main character of this book.

The story begins the day of her death, on September 23th 1963 in the village Roccacolomba.(Roccacolomba is fictional, don’t try to book a hotel there).

Italian books

The woman, “Mennù”, started working as almond picker at the age of six to help the poor family. Mennù had come a long way from the almond field. As a teenager she became servant of rich family Alfallipe.  Later she started to manage the family estates on behalf of the lazy Orazio, saving them from bankruptcy. At Orazio’s death, she took care of his wife. She obliged the three selfish and spoiled children to visit the mother by passing them a monthly wage. Yes, because La Mennulara, an illiterate waitress, died surprisingly rich.

lifestyle, people

Fertility day. About a disastrous health campaign and motherhood in Italy

2016-09-04 • By

My thougts about “fertility day”, an initiative of Italian health ministry showing how motherhood in Italy is still permeated by old stereotypes.

A disastrous communication campaign to launch the so-called fertility day on 22nd of September made Italian women mad.

Fertility day was meant to inform women and men on how to protect their procreative health. Of course there’s the low birthrate of Italy behind it. This might cause in the future problems of sustainability of our healthcare and welfare system. Everybody knows that. It not scandalous at all: it’s a real problem many other EU countries are trying to address.

The problem was that the fertility day campaign was completely wrong. Do you think they gave information on how to avoid infections? About access to in vitro fertilization techniques? Not at all.

It has been mostly addressed towards women and based on the message: tick tock, tick tock, hey your getting older, hurry up to get pregnant or you’ll miss your chance.

It featured an image of a woman brandishing a hourglass, with the claim “beauty is ageless, fertility isn’t”.

fartility day

not a joke: the real image of the campaign

A wave of rage raised among women who reminded on social networks the best way to boost fertility: permanent jobs, options to rent or buy a house with acceptable costs, more public kidergartens, no fear to be fired after maternity leave.

You can read more in this article in Quartz magazine, but also CBS, NYpost and Huffington Post talked about it.

The only effect was to make everyone mad. They bothered women who are delaying pregnancy for external private or economic reasons: precarious job, no stable relationship, lack of external help. They made angry infertile couple for to health problems, gays and lesbians, women who are not willing to have children. For those the campaign was not only ridiculous, but frankly offensive. Even women with children got mad, reminding that after you gave birth you are left alone with the only help of family and private baby-sitters. (Yes in Italy grandparents are the real welfare: without them most of the families will simply not exists).

I know really a few women in their thirties delaying pregnancy if they have a job, avhouse and a stable relationship because they go clubbing every night or they got workaholic trying to become the next Marissa Mayers (oops I forgot she is a CEO and also a mother).

I think it’s the worst health communication campaign ever. The claim “fertility is a common good” was particularly annoying for it’s reminding a sad page of our history, when fascists asked to do more children for a stronger nation.

When I saw it I couldn’t believe it. How could they be so stupid? But I have to say it did not completely surprised me. You know why?

It’s nothing different from the usual idea of motherhood in Italian society.

Motherhood in Italy in seen in a contradictory way. Superficially, we idealize it. But if you go deeper, I believe that Italian society misleads the complexity of motherhood with the simple act of taking care.

Places

Dolomites hiking. The classic “Tre Cime di Lavaredo” circular trail.

2016-08-14 • By

A Dolomites hiking trail you want to take is for sure the circular one surrounding famous Three Peaks of Lavaredo.

First: I’m not especially expert of mountains and hiking. That means among the different level Dolomites hiking trails you can take,  I’m recommending a easy one. You can do with children and dogs. Of course you need a minimum equipment, like wind jacket and hiking boots.

How to get there.

Starting point is Misurina with its enchanting lake. This place deserves a visit itself, even if you don’t go to the Three Peaks. The reflex of the mountains mirrors into the crystal lake creating fascinating effects. (The old hotels around makes you feel like in “Shining”, but it might be only the light, or my imagination…)

dolomites hiking

Misurina lake

From Misurina take the scenic route to the starting point of the path, the Alpine hut “Auronzo”. To access the site by car you have to pay a toll of 25 €. I know, it’s not cheap, but I guess it’s discourages the less motivated excursionists, since the trails are very crowded and the parking area around the hut is big, but not infinite. As you might imagine, this is a beautiful place, but not exactly a place where you can stay in peace far from the crowd, at least in high season. Otherwise you can park in Misurina and take a bus from there. You’ll spend 4 € (one way) for the bus and more or less the same for the car park , depending on how long you stay.

So by car or bus (did I mention you can walk?) you got to the Auronzo hut and you can start to be amazed by the Three Peaks and from the view of the Misurina lake below you.