Tuesday, October 28, 2014


It doesn't take much to figure out what allergia translates as.

So those delicious more I ate over the weekend? Well, it turns out I'm allergic.

Yesterday I woke up with a rash, nausea, and a headache. More than anything, I was amazed at the rash, it had shown up overnight and it wasn't even itchy. And it wasn't all over my body either, just my stomach and chest. Nowhere else. I wasn't overly worried, I have sensitive skin and have had reactions to allsorts over the years - but even so, this was on a whole other level. I couldn't ignore it and went to the doctor's in the afternoon.

My GP's pretty cool, he's got the biggest CD collection I've ever seen, and he's always got something like Pink Floyd playing in his surgery. Monday afternoon is the only session he has when you don't have to make an appointment, and I was amazed to only find one person in the waiting room when I arrived!

So after being prodded and examined and having my lungs listened to, the doctor's diagnosis confirmed my doubts, I was allergic to blackberries. I also have to avoid raspberries - which is no problem as I very rarely eat them - and strawberries! Strawberries! I love strawberries. But I had been lucky, the reaction hadn't spread to my lungs or liver.

Today I've still got the angry red rash, but overall I'm feeling better. I've got my medicine that I was prescribed, tablets (compresse) for about a week, and drops (gocce) for two weeks (which taste disgusting!).

Is this what happens when a country girl moves to a big city in a foreign country?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Sunday Classic

I heard this song on the radio a few days ago, it's La stagione dell'amore by Franco Battiato from 1983.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Word of The Week

le more (feminine plural) - blackberries

Don't get confused, more has nothing to do with the word amore, unless you have a particular love for the fruit that is...

I can't remember the last time I had some blackberries, but seeing as I'm on a mission to eat more fruit and veg I picked up a box at the supermarket yesterday, and they're very delicious!

In a completely different context more could also mean 'brunettes', and if you had dark hair you could say you were mora without meaning that you're a blackberry!

Friday, October 24, 2014

My (belated) sixth Italianniversary

October 22nd marked six years since my arrival in Italy. It was a Wednesday like it was back in 2008, when I arrived in Milan Malpensa to be picked up by my friend Roby, with only my case and battered secondary school backpack. I didn't feel much like celebrating this year, I've been feeling a bit stuck in a rut recently. The most exciting thing I did was treat myself to some sushi, Japanese beer, and krapfen (pack of two and damn right did I eat both the same evening); which seeing as I've been on a diet since July (over 7kg lost!) was actually pretty damn special.

Today I'm on another planet after finally falling asleep around 5am, only to then be wide awake around 9.15. Late last night I was back at Radio Deejay visiting nightowls Mauro and Andrea, who have a show from 1-4am (if your Italian's up to scratch and you find yourself awake at the time I highly recommend tuning in, the show always makes for entertaining listening!). It was the positive experience that I so badly needed to feel better. I was chatting away with the boys on-air, at 3am, after having had a couple of glasses of the prosecco I'd bought along. The boys and the listeners showered me with compliments for my Italian, and also for what they called a perfect radio voice when I spoke in English. At that time I have no idea how I even managed to string together coherent sentences in Italian!

So my 7th year in Italy's started off very well. For some reason my odd-numbered years here have been much better than the even-numbered ones, and I'm really hoping that will be the case this year.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Sunday Classic

Here's another proper classic of Italian music. Per Elisa (which my slightly rusty German skillz tell me is the Italian translation of 'Für Elise') is by Alice from 1981.