Starting a new life in Italy? It seems easy but before packing everything, have a look to the main obstacles that you have to face including language barriers, making friends, burocracy and dealing with the fact that you are always going to be a foreigner in a foreign land.
Language: you know that you will have to learn Italian, don’t you? Well, English language has ever been a problem for Italian people who just have recently improved their English. The best thing you can do is learn Italian. How? Take lessons, try to speak with workmates at work, at the super market, watch TV and movies, buy newspaper and read books. At the beginning you can use also gestures and facial expressions, typically used by Italians abroad!
Friends: make new friends can seem a little difficult and you can feel scary. When you move to a new country, you still have your friends “back home” and you keep in touch with them, but you also need to get to know someone and make a new network of people you can trust to. The sooner you can get in a situation where you can meet new people the sooner you’ll be in a position to make friends: workmates invite you to hang out at night? Take the chance, go with them and meet new people! But, be patient. You won’t find new good friends in one afternoon. It can take a while to get to know people, so just relax and take it easy.
Pasta: live with the fact that, if you make new Italian friend you will have to eat pasta almost every day. After six months, you will be a very good chef and pasta expert: pesto, allo scoglio,putanesca, carlofortina, amatriciana, griccia and so on, you they won’t have any secret for you!
Burocracy: although Dante didn’t know it at the time, he perfectly described the labyrinth of Italian government offices and bureaucracy when he wrote ‘Abandon hope all who enter here’. Italian bureaucrats would appear to love red tape and have invented official papers and stamps for every possible occasion and purpose. Just finding the right office is a challenge and when you finally locate it, it’s invariably closed (many offices open on a few days per week for a couple of hours only). You even need documents to obtain other documents and the laws governing the issue and use of these documents are frequently incomprehensible. So, the only thing we can tell you is “good luck”!
Traffic: if you are used to go to work with a bicycle or by bus, you are going to have hard times! Traffic in many of the major Italian cities is a very big problem. Between the worst cities for traffic we have: Palermo followed by Rome, Messina, Napoli, Milano, Catania, Bari, Bologna, Torino, Firenze.
Now, don’t panic! There are also positive aspects of moving and living in Italy and for them you’ll have to wait two weeks and keep following our blog!