Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Back to Firenze

We're back to Firenze, in a new house. This house is meant to be used by the owner and, thus, the sitting room was not turned into another bedroom. Furniture also has its own identity. Common areas are the entrance hall, which is divided in two parts, the sitting room with four couches, the kitchen (small) and a terrace. Plenty of common areas for hopefully nice personal atmosphere.

Florence has become a city of love and hate. Both. Love because it has become so familiar. Hate because after these years ("all these years") one cannot ignore anymore its very bad things.

Locals are not nice. They do not have time, they do not have patience, they don't care. They have absolutely no respect for customers and for immigrants. To be very clear, I am not saying this is a case of xenophobia or racism. Absolutely not. This is a case of zero tolerance for people who have questions and doubts. Florentines don't have patience to answer a question from someone who doesn't fully understand Italian. They don't have the minimal patience to wait while one decides which pizza one wants.

Furthermore and not only specific to Florence, there is this thing of the "pride in the strong culture". Italians are so proud of their great culture, music, traditions, food and everything that they don't care about anything foreign. This is a case of extreme cultural protectionism. It is impossible to hear any foreign language either in radio or tv. There are possibly almost one hundred different tv channels here, from national to city tvs. And it is impossible to listen to some English. Italians are utterly proud of their "Made in Italy" and, because of that, it is extremely difficult to find anything not-Italian.

Living in a 100% Italian place is tiresome. Not because of Italy itself, but because always the same single nationality is boring. Italians loose too, they loose a lot from their being enclosed on themselves. But they don't know it. And even if they thought about it, they would disagree: Italy is so good that there is no need of foreign music, foreign cinema, foreign languages. Overall, this is a pity.

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