Autore: ANIA ANNA
EXPAT AND TRAVELLER IN ITALY
The idea about moving out and starting a new “life” again (I was born in Poland, went to study to Netherlands and UK so I have been moving around with my suitcases a bit) was exciting, as much as it seemed to be a challenge.
Before I have been to Italy only once, as a kid, I didn’t know the language, neither anyone living closer thaew hundreds kilometres away. Anyway somehow intuitively I felt that moving here was a good decision and that many great things were waiting ahead.
I believe one of the reasons why italians so happily share their “approach” and spread it around is the pride they have in their food tradition, true love for their cuisine and products in all of their varieties. The celebration of local tastes and ingredients, the way dishes are prepared or things produced.
I admire that people respect history and food customs of each of the regions. Small differences do matter, they are not ignored or lost in the chaos of mass production and globalisation. On the contrary, in a way these are praised.
To understand the scale you can simply try to go through products classified as DOP or DOCG, or listed by Slow Food organization as unique for Italy. They seem uncountable. Sometimes differences between certain types of matured cheese or extra virgine olive oil seem impossible to get, especially for someone who comes from the “outside”. Some say that it is insane to see so many products as special (when unique is mainstream it obviously loses its special character). For me it is other way. It is a reflection of how important food is in Italy.
I admire how engaging the topic is, how deep the love of people for tastes from their home, or ones they remember from their childhood is; and how far they go to protect these. It is a great tendency to observe in times when in most shops all around the world (!) the same companies sell basically the same items.
People in Poland as well as Netherlands can learn so much from Italians who treat all of the aspects of food preparation, rituals and beliefs around it with respect and admiration; care honestly for these.
This life style approach which I hope to keep as a life long “souvenir” and the great lesson Italians have taught (me so far).