I ramdomly chose your name from the list because I had a student named Tyrone. I am a friend of Ansy and Chiara’s. I am also a teacher at UC Berkeley. I was raised in Oakland vefore moving to Hayward. I have been to Italy once. It was weird to be in a place where it was daytime while it was nightime back at home. I taught 7th grade history so it was also crazy to finally see the monuments and places I had told students about but had never actually seen myself!
It was also surprising to find out that unlike in America black women from Kenya are considerd the most beautiful women in Italy and Italian men felt lucky if a Kenyan woman dated them! When I went I had braids in my hair but since I am a brown-skinned AA woman the Italian men also asked why I was so light compared to the Kenyan women! Hahaha normally it is the other way around.
I have not been back to Italy since but I hope to one day. What has been surprising to you? Since you don’t know me from Adam I am attaching a pic.
Honestly, the entire experience has been one big surprise but I didn’t expect so much history and art to be around every corner. It’s common to see a medieval building dating back hundreds of years or a building from ancient times that is a thousand years old, it’s extremely cool. The way the Roman people interact with me was very surpising as well. Unlike in America I never get awkward stares, suspicious looks, or judgmental glances. The people in Rome treat me like everyone else, my presence doesn’t intimadate them and they ignore me most of the time. The food is wonderful but I expected that, I didn’t expect for the Italian diet to be so heavy and filled with Carbs. Every night is either Pasta or Pizza basically, which is nice but I like more variety in my diet. I did expect to have a good time and to see a lot of art, that’s exactly what I got.
Thanks for commenting Lanette
Africa is very close to Italy and from my understanding Italy and Africa have not had the type of imbalanced interactions as Africa and America. Yes it is amazing the relics of so many years ago that are just everywhere!!!
The one thing that was hard for me was the fact that Italian meals are very long. There is no rush, rush. In fact the idea that you can rush an Italian or that the customer is always right got me in trouble twice. I definitely have not forgotten that lesson!!!
What lesson do you think you will never forget from your trip? What place in the bay area do you believe holds as much history as the architecture in Italy?
Thanks for writing back. I look forward to your reply!
I loved your comment about gelato. It could stand for all of Italy for me! I too am addicted.
Your comment about how you were so positively (normally) treated in Italy is profound. It is one reason so many African American writers, poets, singers, musicians, etc., have lived in Europe, Italy, Paris. I think of James Baldwin for example.
See you soon!
I like this picture a lot, our first day together
Me and a new good friend, The Real JFK
Our 1st trip to the neighborhood Gelato spot, you can tell because I’m not in the photo
I’m in Italy, O Yea!!!
These stairs had it in for me the whole trip
Several meals from our 1st night
Chiara schooling us, she knows all…
We would attend a musical concert here later…
Spigato Alla Carbonara, my favorite
dish. O how i miss you!!!
Look who’s getting ready for
Ostia Antica, Large Archeological Site
JFK at the Coliseum
The Inside of a Renaissance Church
Not a big coffee fan, but this was bomb!!
Seventy………Five…..in my John voice
My 1st opera, but not my last. I enjoyed it!
One of my favorite little people and grumpy gills
She wanted to take a picture with me, crazy right.
In the kitchen whippin it like Gordon Ramsay
JFK is ready to go!
I have fun everywhere I go
Katie doesn’t like this photo, so it made the cut.
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