Pinch me

This time we are taking a trip backwards. Here is the voice of a New Yorker who just moved to Italy. Sometimes you have to be out of your natural element to find a new home (Leggilo in italiano)

Usually La VOCE's articles and content are dedicated to Italians living in New York city, but today the proverbial “shoe” is on the other foot. I'm a New Yorker and Brooklyn-ite living in Italy, and the “shoe” is fitting quite nicely.

Both places and its inhabitants are extremely rich in culture and history. And for as long as I can remember I've dreamed about experiencing each like a first kiss; while also becoming localized in the community and immersing myself in all they have to offer.

I was raised on the gulf coast of Florida. A place with not as rich a history, and even less culture as either New York City or Italy, but have ties to both. I'm half Italian by heritage and both parents were born and raised on Long Island. Both Italy and New York City were magical places to me when I was growing up (and still are to me today). American movies and family stories influenced my perceptions, while my imagination only added fuel to the fire for my desire to lose myself in their vastly different landscapes and demographics.

After college I moved to New York City for work, chasing down yet another but different kind of dream. It was everything I imagined and more. People, and the cultures they brought with them through generations, from all over the planet all on one tiny island! After all, my dream is only one of millions to live in NYC. And I was here, amongst all of them.

Almost ten years later, while awaiting the birth of my first child, I have the chance to fulfill another one of my apparitions of the mind by moving to Italy. My soul thrives on being out of my natural element, submerged in different cities, cultures; surrounded by people speaking exotic foreign languages, amazing beautiful landscapes; and yet when I stepped off the plane at Fiumicino airport in Rome, I had a faint sense of a new found peace. Almost like deja-vu or seeing someone in the streets you swear you've met before.

I know my time here will continue to amaze and fascinate me on all levels. Adventures will be had (parenthood among them!). Places I've only read about in books or seen in movies will be visited and explored. Cuisines attempted to be recreated in the U.S. will be eaten in abundance and with vast enjoyment. I will attempt to learn a balance constantly craved by my fellow New Yorkers: “work to live, not live to work”. But with guidance and influence of great people (and great coffee), I'm looking forward to grow as a person, in this “dream” come true. Ciao.


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