April 7, 2010

Florentine Tunnel Vision

So after living here for 8 months, getting settled into the cultural differences, dating Italians, eating the Florentine food I came to the realization that the Florentines are very closed people. You would think from an outsiders perspective that moving to a European & typically liberal minded society that the atmosphere & mentality would be open, no? Boy, did I have that wrong.

The Florentine people have such a vast & deep rooted history here: the birth place of Renaissance art & science, romance, noble families & architecture, incredible food & wine that has been a staple for centuries. However, when you have all of these things you also have people that cannot see outside their own culture. They are proud (which I don't blame them) of their history, but almost to a default.

I think its sad that you practically have to beg them to eat something other than Italian, convince them that modern art is beautiful, and that the men will not consider marrying you because you aren't from a certain neighborhood of Florence. Keep in mind they will date you (seriously), along with other women, for long periods of time, and think its totally normal! But marriage is generally off limits to non-Florentines.

I keep praying that maybe I will get lucky and find a diamond in the rough here in Florence. I know it exists, because my Canadian friend has one! But until then, I will try to remain focused on the things that make this city so special, as the Florentines do. But different from them, I will refuse to have "Florentine tunnel vision"

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