Italy Travel News: November 3 – November 25

Here’s a round-up of the latest Italy travel news and information for November 3 through November 19:

  • Venice: Eight Authors Share Their Love
    I am so, so humbled & happy to be included on the list of contributors for this new book, "Dream of Venice." You've read my own piece on this very site, maybe you've already added the book to your wish list… Now you can read a few other excerpts & see a few more photos in this article that are sure to make you want your own copy of the book even more.
  • Dream of Venice: Alive and Mysterious
    Here's another nice review of the new "Dream of Venice" book. (Have I mentioned I'm in it?)
  • Graffiti from Pompeii
    Sure, ancient Rome seems formal & dignified in retrospect, but folks back then were no saints. Case in point? Here's a list of all the graffiti found at the excavations of Pompeii. And this is ancient graffiti we're talking about, too, not modern stuff. I can't get over the fabulousness of this. Thanks to my friend Christine of Miss Expatria for passing it along.
  • Tourist fined €20,000 for carving initial on Rome’s Colosseum

    First thought: ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??!?

    Second thought: Funny how a few hundred years makes all the difference. We find "graffiti" carved by the likes of Lord Byron on an ancient Roman monument & we think it's charming today. This guy? Carving a K into the Colosseum in 2014? Notsomuch.

  • Vatican to install showers for homeless at St Peter’s Square

    After hearing of a homeless man in Rome who said he smelled too badly to join a Bishop for a meal in a restaurant, Pope Francis has ordered the public toilets in Vatican City to be upgraded – they will soon include shower facilities for the city's homeless.

    I think it's fair to say that this pope is the best.

  • Is Rome Burning?

    "According to the Ignorance Index, an Ipsos MORI survey carried out in 14 countries, Italians are the least informed on the subject [of immigration], believing that immigrants make up 30 percent of the population, when the real figure is just 7 percent. That’s less than Britain or Germany (both at 13 percent), Spain (12 percent) and France (10 percent)."

    Two things.

    1. Italians having a problem with immigrants is nothing new, but – according to this essay (& recent stories in the news) it appears to be getting markedly worse, not better. Which is the opposite of what should be happening, as people become more aware of the wider world. So that's disheartening.

    2. There is something called the Ignorance Index. That is a thing. I am both completely intrigued & terrified to find out where the U.S. might come out on that scale. Ugh.

    3. Okay, three things. You should really read this essay. It’s a look at the decayed outskirts of Italian cities, how that decay impacts today’s young people, and what Italy is trying to do about it.

  • Italian tabloid skewered for racy gelato headline
    Italy has long been known as a difficult place to be a feminist, & this recent tabloid headline – insinuating that a female member of the government was doing something sexual to an ice cream cone – isn't surprising. I like the backlash, & I also don't think anything is going to change because of it. Women in Italy are still pretty much fair game, even if (especially if?) they're in positions of power.

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