Saturday, 14 July 2007

Expat Talk

I subscribe to a forum for expats called . It is part of a much bigger community run by Cristina Fassio called . It has been a huge help to me in my move here and will hopefully continue to be.

People from all over the world subscribe to the forum, the majority being from the US. Much of the information has a US bias but then it is far more difficult to enter Italy from the US than the EU. Much that applies in the US also applies to Australia and Canada. However, those of us that are from the EU provide the information needed for EU subscribers as it is needed. As the rules are constantly changing it is a challenge to say the least! I never know from one month to the next what I really require for residency and haven't applied for it as yet because of the speed of changes! Everyone pitches in and it is a fun and lively forum.

Why have I decided to mention it in this post? There have been a number of interesting and amusing threads recently that seem to have caught everybody's attention.

One focused on the fashion for baring large amounts of female flesh at the moment and peoples reactions to this. Not only was this an hysterical thread but a thought provoking one as it showed how differently people can view a woman according to what she is wearing and how she looks in what she is wearing!

Another that is currently causing controversy is about one particular member's bad experience of his time in Florence. Obviously living here, and having chosen to live here, I took his critiscism personally. Consequently, I managed to upset others on the board as my remarks were taken to include them. What I really wanted to say to the original poster cannot be written here - well it could be, but I'm too polite in a public forum! So many of this person's experiences were so outside anything I have experienced here I can only conclude he was attracting negativity either in his attitude or that he lives in an excessively polite and well mannered society when not in Italy. Who can say?

Expats is a great place to get things off your chest, ask questions, tell stories and search for answers. That one person has been able to anger me so much I think says it all - it really is a forum where - nearly - anything can be said.

If you are looking for quality information about a move to Italy, look no further than Expats in Italy. And if you enjoy discussion about all things Italian, join the forum!

Friday, 13 July 2007

Breakfast Pancakes

We had/have a tradition in our house of Pancakes on a Sunday. Having finally found out which raising agent to use - the one for pizza which doesn't have vanilla in it - we have started to make them again. Although we are not American we prefer American Pancakes to crepes!

This one is adorned with just lemon and sugar, but we have been known to cover them in nutella and orange marmalade for a jaffa cake feel, maple syrup and bacon, cheese and ham, or just plain old golden syrup or honey!

We use Nigella's recipe and even with slight variations in amounts they always turn out well!

Thursday, 12 July 2007

The Boy Who Lived

Yes, Harry Potter's latest adventure opened in Florence yesterday. It is my husband's birthday today but he had to go on his travels, so we went as a family to watch the first show.

Antonia spent much of the film with my pashmina over her face but by the end she was shouting and clapping with everyone else!

It was a good film, in fact better than the book which I feel was the poorest of the series so far - of course the final installment is published next week, which hopefully will fulfill everyone's wildest dreams!!

It was a very dark film even compared to The Prisoner Of Azkaban which I also think is the best book in the series. I hadn't realised how well J.K. Rowlings had tapped into what kids/teenagers want until the "kissing scene"! It was greeted with many whoops and claps by the largely teenage - early twenties audience, who have obviously grown-up with the story. Many turned up in shirts and ties with little scars drawn on their heads! This was mainly the girls!! It also made me realise just what a phenomenom H.P. really is. The audience was mainly young U.S. students. This wouldn't seem such a thing if the film was American in origin but for a home-grown, British story it was quite something to realise just how big the series really is world wide!

My poor son had his haircut yesterday as well. I say "poor" because at 12 he isn't ready for attention from girls. With his new haircut and glasses he is a bit of a ringer for a certain boy wizard. Consequently there were a number of young ladies nudging and whispering to each other about how he looked. His dad and I thought this hysterical, not surprisingly, he didn't!!

Florence also opened ahead of the UK so we have found one more good reason for living here!