When Living Abroad Sucks, Eat Nutella Pizza

Dear Internet Diary,

How are you? I know it’s been too long since we’ve last spoken–so much has happened in the past month or so that it’s hard to pick a good place to start, but we both know that finesse is not my strongest quality so I don’t think you’ll mind too much if I jump right in.

After a long few weeks of searching for apartments from the internet-less cave of F’s parent’s house, we finally managed to find a place of our own and move in. Of course my stomach decided to choose Moving Day as the perfect time to stage a WWF fight inside my body, so I spent most of the day lying on the bathroom floor while Zola hid between the boxes in our new living room to get away from the Exorcist sounds I was making.  Perhaps not the most ideal way to spend our first night in our new apartment, but I did discover that my bathroom is in fact awesome and totally prepared to handle my future hangovers.

It’s been a painfully long transition into spring here. My winter coats and sweaters are still hanging in my closet, and each morning as I get dressed I glance longingly at the plastic storage container where my trusty pair of Rainbow flip-flops lie, sighing as I pull on my worn black boots and puffy jacket to go to work.  Even though I know that in a few months I’ll be complaining about the heat and the infestation of mosquitoes that terrorize the city each summer, it all seems so far away and impossible that my patience has completely vanished.  I find myself angrily throwing scarves and tights into the far corners of my bedroom, as though it is their fault that the sun refuses to stick around for good.

To be honest, the lack of sunshine isn’t the only thing weighing on my mind. Although I’ve been in Italy for about 7 years now, this year has been particularly difficult and I find myself questioning every new decision that I make. Nearly all of my closest friends have left Florence this year and moved back home, in a bold statement of dissatisfaction that has left me scrambling to find that familiar sense of faith and compassion for my beautiful city that was once so easy to call to mind. The lack of economic opportunity and constant uphill battle to be understood have taken their toll on me as well, and with each passing day I find myself wistfully remembering all my lazy summer afternoons on the beaches of California, and wondering how to move forward from here.

If you have any advice or a kind word for your anonymous friend, I’d love to hear from you. For now, I’ll be drowning my melancholy with the biggest Nutella pizza I can find.

Cari Saluti,

Your preoccupied friend in Florence



Author: The Florence Diaries

Living in Florence means always looking out for mystery poo on the sidewalk.

4 thoughts

  1. awww Gina I am so sorry you’ve been going through stuff, ,I knew the moving was stressful but we need to get together more (and eat nutella pizza). I too am pissed off that its not summer for good… I still need to come and see your new place!

  2. Gina…..sounds as if you’re going through a tough dose of growing pains!
    You’ll come out stronger on the other side!
    You may find that moving back to California wouldn’t be as ideal as your memories.
    We’re having a long long cool spring here in NJ…..a weird weather year all around!
    Any way that you could take a break for a day or two….see something new….??

  3. It’s the weather’s fault! A long winter tests even the patience of a saint. If you could go on a holiday to somewhere warmer down south it may help and the bonus would be to get away from the city,
    Here in Brisbane Australia we have had a very long summer- hot and very humid! It was only 2 weeks ago that we started to get some clear crisp Autumn mornings but the trade off here is beautiful dry sunny winters. If your weather is still cold but dry maybe embrace it and go for a long hike or bike ride. I was only a visitor to your city for one week but those actvities were the best!

  4. As a fellow Californian, I want you to hang in there because I will be moving to Florence at the end of July and it will be nice to have some familiarity of home…and by familiarity, I mean we can rap to Snoop together and it wont’ be weird when I randomly blurt out “Caaaaaalifornia Loooooove”. Check out my blog http://www.missdirectiontravel.blogspot.com
    Can we be friends?!! haha

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