As if I haven’t already proclaimed my love for Italy in the same sense as Shakespeare let his Romeo invent new words to fully testify his love for Julia – but here we go again. And yes, there’s no escaping that the country, it’s landscapes and nature; the variations from coast to inland, from the Apennines to the Garda lake; traditional culture as well as modern, progressive one; where history and timelessness exist side by side, where the two usual anti-theses nature and culture lives and prospers in symbiosis. But if a place in itself isn’t enough, Italy also has all those things that we ordinary people are fascinated by, no matter if we want it or not. Luxury, richness, cars, yachts, design, fine wining and fine dining – whatever floats your boat. Anything can be grown in a country like this, there’s no need to save for a cold season or rainy days – even the way Italians eat boasts of carelessness and carpe diem! But, and yes, here comes the but, that is of course not why I keep coming back time after time, why I smile loudly every time someone mentions Italy, why I disappear into daydreaming every time I look at my phone with the background picture of the Amalfi coast. Despite all it’s beauty, the country in itself is not the real reason for my true, undying love. No matter how intense, annoying or self righteous the people of Italy seem to be to the rest of the world – I love them. I love them all, as a collective, as individuals, I love their passion, their appetite for life, I love that like no other people, the Italians know how to actually design a life. To spice up every moment with a little bit of everyday luxury, with an extra dose of sparkles in a world that could be grey as mud. They have a good wine for dinner, any day a week, they put the finest olive oil on all their food and they go to have lunch in the most beautifully situated cafés along the waters. They can be hectic and intense, but this is always followed by a smile and a laugh. They know we make fun of them, and they don’t care, cause they have the country, they have a simple but brilliant lifestyle that we northerners really only can be jealous of. Sure, they can’t play ice hockey – which only means there’s no dirty ill behaved hockey guys around.
I will now stop selling Italy to you, this is not a sales pitch. It’s just my longest lasting relationship so far, and no, I’m not getting bored!