Thursday, November 29

What's Up in Italy

While the nasty weather, the economy, and Mr. Monti, our Prime Minister, seems to have everyone in a foul mood these days, I take my monthly inventory on all good things Italy.  I might as well start with some of the stickier parts.

  • First, the weather:  As tweeted in @newsfromItaly, buckets & buckets of rainfall everywhere, means loads of snow in the mountains--The Ski Season has opened in the Dolomites!  Now, if people other than the politicians could actually afford to get there...
  • In his blog assessing the Italian financial situation, Economist (& Nobel Prize Winner) Paul Krugman thinks that Italy's finances might not be in as sad shape as one thinks.  He doesn't take a stab about the future, with jobs going, businesses closing, and things costing more for the ever-eroding middle class, but still good news is good news.
What's The Matter With Italy? About Italy 

  • In Politics, the left-wing Democratic Party held their American-style primaries and a debate between the two big hitters: old-guard politician Bersani -vs- young & aggressive Mayor of Florence, Renzi.  Even more refreshing was the amicable atmosphere during the debates vis-a-vis the shouting that usually goes on on talk shows.  And, on an even more refreshing note, Berlusconi continues his they-love-me/they-love-me-not flirtation with forming yet another party & giving it a go in the Spring Elections.  But, so far, his Big Announcement seems to be playing out as successfully as Donald Trump's.  As long as he's into resurrections, perhaps he should use the Margherita party name - whose symbol is the Daisy.  Or even a pizza Margherita for a logo.
  • In November, Rome's Christmas market opened in Piazza Navona, which draws lots of crowds.  Those who need a nice new figurine for their manger scenes can get them there in the festive atmosphere of the piazza.  And, speaking of figurines, of course those wily Neapolitans have come out with Obama and Romney - the perfect figures for your manger scene-what they have to do with the birth of Jesus, remains to be seen, but it looks like Romney has since been discounted, and we can only hope that Berlusconi goes the same way.
  • Not only have the fresh-pressed olive oils come out this November (and it seems to be a banner year), the Vino Novello has hit the stands and restaurants as well!  Many wineries and olive oil companies (I personally love forays into Umbria) open over the weekends and provide wonderful tastings of all the bounty.
  • And finally, in Rome's Torre Argentina area, it looks like the humans running the Cat Sanctuary are getting the boot, but the cats will be allowed to rome the area even as it is opened up to the public.  This is an ongoing saga, so watch this page.

No comments: