What is Wrong With Romans?

November 1, 2017
By | in Italian Culture | 27 Comments

My frustration over the bad attitude of Romans has boiled over this week and is spilling into this blog…. It started as I was walking across Piazza del Popolo heading home the other day.  There is a lot of activity in the Piazza in the late afternoon and early evening.  Usually a street entertainer is […]

A Pope’s Bitter End

Dear Blog Readers – I just spent the week taking a journalism course in the small town of Fiuggi, in the hills a little south of Rome. I loved going back to “school” and spending hours in the classroom learning about Italian law, the modern history of Europe, and economics.   While I was there, I […]

Back in Gritty, Gorgeous Catania

I went back this weekend to the gritty, vibrant, gorgeous city of Catania, Sicily for another story on migrants. After a week of feeling despondent about the bitterness of the US elections, it was a thrill go back and breathe in the city’s energy. Catania has been conquered and ruled by Romans, Arabs, Byzantines, Normans […]

Only in Naples – Katherine Wilson’s Story

June 18, 2016
By | in Italian Culture | 17 Comments

Dear Blog Readers- My journalist friend Barbie Nadeau (of Daily Beast and CNN fame)  wrote to me the other day introducing me to her friend Katherine Wilson, author of the recently published memoir about Naples, “Only in Naples: Lessons in Food and Famiglia from My Italian Mother-in-Law.”  Katherine wrote that she was eager to meet […]

Scraping Away at Ghiberti’s North Doors

Last week I had the rare opportunity to dedicate myself for two days to a feature story in Florence, the restoration of Lorenzo Ghiberti’s North Doors on the Florence baptistery and the making of a replica. After becoming discouraged about the current situation in Rome (see last post “Ravishing, Rotten Rome”) it was refreshing to […]

Ravishing, Rotten Rome

The other night I happened to be passing through Piazza del Popolo at dusk as I headed home from work. My mind was spinning around the events of the day: a massive corruption trial in Rome, and more scandals at the Vatican. As I briskly clipped my way over the cobblestones, my thoughts, interspersed with […]

The Titanic Vacation

I could make a  series of movies titled “Titanic Vacations with my Family” staring my husband, of course, the frustrated, middle-aged man secretly in love with that rather mechanical woman inside his car navigator who occasionally re-routes but never talks back and he can always turn off during moments of tension. That navigatrice is in […]

Rose Petals Raining on Rome

August 22, 2015
By | in Italian Culture | 16 Comments

Rose petals launched from a low-flying helicopter fluttered down from the sky over hundreds of teary-eyed friends of an alleged criminal clan boss on Thursday at a funeral in Rome. The casket arrived in an elaborate black carriage with gold trimmings fit for Cinderella. Six black horses with black plumed headdresses pulled the carriage, as […]