Which way?


Over the years, I always seem to find myself torn between two worlds, two lovers or two roads. Although the journey has been an exciting one so far, there are days when I would prefer to just have fewer choices and stay in one spot.

The magazine article has been published and even while reading it, I could sense the duality of my life. I seem to always have a love/hate relationship with people, places and things. Perhaps it is because I’m objective and optimistic that I can see the good and bad in everything? I don’t know, but it leaves me feeling a bit incomplete at times.

I have lived in Genoa for going on five years now. Many people write to me asking what life is really like living in Italy and I find myself laughing hysterically (more like a maniac not because something is funny), do you really want to know? Okay, so some days I walk by the enormous fountain in the center of the city and think somebody pinch me, I feel like I’m on a movie set. Really, I do. Then there are other days, when I get off a very crowded bus cursing and swearing because it’s raining again – it rains a lot here, and I ask myself, why at 47, am I still taking public transit? Oh yeah, right, there’s no free parking in this city and yet I gag from the pollution of all the cars and scooters.

But after much contemplation, yes, I’m still upset about my snow comment, I realized what I was really trying to say in the magazine interview. In Canada, the air is just cleaner and somehow I connected that to snow…the cool, fresh air that you take in and feel your lungs expand to greet it. I also miss wide-open spaces and personal space, which just doesn’t exist in Italy. If you leave a gap between the car in front of you, a scooter will zip in there. If you leave a space between yourself and the person in the queue ahead of you, someone will butt in there as soon as you turn to look the other way.

I love many things about Italy and Genoa. Most importantly, I love my Italian husband and well the country kinda comes as part of the package…for better or worse. If I didn’t, then there’s a pretty good chance that I would have taken all the good parts of Italy back to Canada with me and chalked it all up as part of the journey.

So, while I tolerate the rude people, horrible customer service, crazy traffic, and public transit I consider myself luckier than most because I can escape up to Portofino mountain and ignore most of it. Is Genoa all that bad? Well not really, it’s a nice place to visit and I have met some wonderful people there. And ironically, even the locals say it is a cold-hearted place.

I will leave you with this…a link to the magazine article and some photos I took on my morning walk around Portofino mountain. Now if you will excuse me, I have to go searching for my missing Passport, yeah, seriously, I am leaving in 11 days and I can’t find the damn thing! Italy has me in her tight grip and is reluctant to let me go for some reason…

The local.it







About lmarmstrong66

I'm a blogger, painter, writer, singer. For the love of all things in nature and creativity.
This entry was posted in Italian Culture, Nature, Tourists, travel and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Which way?

  1. Donna says:

    Hey Leah! I’ve been following your blog for some time now and feel like I know you, somewhat. Anyway, enough to know you’re the kind of gal I’d like in the cubicle next to mine at work. Oh my glamorous life- I know. It has been a real hoot reading about your journey! It’s long been a dream of mine to live in Italy- have vacationed there multiple times and have seen a good amount of the regions. Sometimes it’s almost a physical ache, I want it so much. Then, I read your blog and I realize that daily life in Italy would probably settle down to what I’m used to now in the states, gorgeous cities and panoramic views aside. So thank you for your realistic
    portrayal… It helps when it’s time to
    leave your beautiful adopted country to be able to take off the rose colored glasses and settle once again into my own home sweet home.
    Good luck finding your passport!

    • Oh Donna,
      Your words couldn’t have come at a better time. Thank you so much. I have been worried sick about finding my Passport. I have tickets to go see my husband in 11 days, we have not seen each other in three months, and now this!

      I am on my way to search the car…and will have to drive back to the city in the next few days to re-search the apartment again. I have looked here in Portofino but it isn’t here and unlikely that I would have brought it up here anyway.

      I have already had to postpone my trip by a month and although I am not crazy about the long trip and I am past the half way point in my husband’s contract, I feel that this is just another messy obstacle in my way of being with him.

      Take care and thanks again šŸ™‚

  2. where can I read the article – send me the link

    Check out my blog http://www.sunsetsisters.wordpress.com

    Date: Sat, 10 Aug 2013 12:49:09 +0000 To: calibishie@hotmail.com

  3. I hear ya! I am an expat too and can relate to you!! Most days I absolutely love it here but there are a few days that I really miss all things ‘Canadian.’ But luckily, I return to Canada every year for a month and I get to enjoy all the things that I miss!! BTW, good luck finding your passport!!

    • Thanks!
      I try to get back to Canada once a year but sometimes I can’t because I need time to sail on the ship with my husband too. But at least I get overseas to an English speaking country and can catch up on some shopping too!
      Found my Passport today šŸ™‚ Thank God!

  4. barbara says:

    i love your blog Leah! I couldn’t agree more with you about love/hate relashionship about Italy!! I feel the same way:)
    Enjoy your time with your husband and good luck finding your passport!

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