It is difficult to describe Rome in words, specially for me as it’s my very first time in Italy. On every street you find beautiful fountains, majestic ruins, and adorable little gelaterias selling home-made gelato topped with freshly whipped cream! Inside bars there are darling old Italian nonnas, chatting to each other about their grandchildren and about knitting, and in groceries— glory of glories, entire rows devoted to pastas of all shapes and sizes!
It is also difficult to describe just how taxing living in Rome can be, from the road rage everyone seems to acquire once they’re behind the wheel, to the sheer difficulty of getting all the required documents such as your permesso di soggiorno (residency permit) and tessera sanitaria (health card), stories for another day. For today, I just want to mention Italian men and their freedom with words and eyes. Not a day goes by without a “Ciao bella!” or a “Sei bellissima!” being thrown at me, not because I’m drop dead gorgeous, but I believe simply because I’m a relatively attractive young female. Being Asian may play a part in this, but let’s not get into Othering theory so early in the morning. And the eyes! When there are no whistles or ciao bellas, there are the eyes that burn right into your soul (apparently located around chest-height). This is a cultural thing, of course, and there are worse places to be for women. As I see it, Italian men mean no harm and to them it’s all part of life— drink good coffee, swear at terrible drivers, compliment beautiful women. All in all, not a bad life.