Random Observations About the Italian Lifestyle
Having been in Italy for almost five weeks, I have noticed some interesting cultural characteristics of the Italian lifestyle. I had known of some of these, but others are new awarenesses for me.
-Tables at ristorante are usually set with wine glasses, as it is the preferred drink at meals.
-When sitting at outdoor trattorias or cafès at six or seven in the evening, Italians are having wine and possibly a snack. it is sort of like happy hour, and usually restaurants do not even open for dinner until 7:30.
-Early in the morning you can find people eating gelato or pizza as well as drinking wine.
-Most Italians have caffè after dinner, and in fact a waiter will act surprised if you decline.
-No matter how warm it is, most Italians are wearing scarves, and this pertains frequently to men also. They dress in multiple layers and wear boots a lot.
-Italian women wear very high heels and manage to walk with no problems on Italy’s cobblestoned streets. As my Italian teacher Lori has commented, it is all part of the “bella figura,” or looking good.
-Italian bus drivers do not appear to be interested in helping you know which stop to get off, or even if the bus is going to the location you you want. They frequently seem to be more interested in talking on their cell phones.
-In most ristorante and trattorias, there are male waiters.
I am sure that not all of these are true in all parts of Italy or for all Italians, of course. I am quite sure that in another five weeks I will have learned even more about the lifestyle of today’ s Italians.