Friday, July 27, 2007

Day 6: Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

When I planned my vacation to Europe, I wanted to make sure I would be back in NYC for the weekend. I like having a few days to relax after traveling, and I also did not want to miss The Heavy Pets at the Knitting Factory tonight.

Right now it is about 1 pm, and I am in the airport in Rome. The flight is about 7 hours, and if all goes as planned, I should be arriving back in Newark around 6pm. Knock on wood.

I wanted to take a moment to thank my parents for such a wonderful trip, and good vibes all around. They will be speninding another week on the island. Some parts of me are jealous, another part of me is ready to come home.

The last couple days of the trip was more of the same. Beautifull weather, and even more beautiful people. The last two nights were easily my favorite. New arrivals to the island on wednesday included good friends of my parents; Steve and Earl, and another animated family "The Volks" We had dinner with Steve and Earl on wednesday which was fantastic. We all started with a local delicacy (Deep Fried Deviled Eggs) and then I had Steak Vournuoff, or something like that. The dish was amazing; Beef, with a creamy mustard sauce, and a side of Spaghetti Pomodoro. Last night was however one of the best meals I ever had in my life! no joke.

The seafood restaurant was called Ciro, and had just opened about 3 days ago. The owner "Ciro" was cruising the dining room to help with the already decadent ambiance. We perused the menu and picked out a few appetizers. I got fresh pasta with rockfish. Everyone agreed it was the best seafood pasta dish we had ever tasted. I usually dont like fresh pasta because of the soft texture, but the short noodles were quite al dente'. The dish was served with chunks of red Rock Fish, that was caught that day. I explaied to Ciro that I was a seafood fanatic, he then told us to wait till the new shipment of "fresh fish" arrived before we made our choices for the main course. About 10 minutes later, Ciro pointed to my father and I, and told us to follow him as he exited the restaurant. We waited a minute or two, and then a mini truck pulled up through the narrow streets. He opened the back of the truck to unload the fish, and he explained what everything was. He went right for the shrimp with claws and broke it in half. He ate it raw! Then he handed me a piece of the raw tail. Probably the best thing I have ever put in my mouth, without embellishment. My father who is not a fan of raw fish in general, was blown away by the taste as well.

As we returned to the empty restaurant, one of the waiters was cutting fresh proscuitto. He turned to me and said "You want to try?" my eyes lit up and I said "YEA!" He told me this was special proscuitto from Spain, so we had to order a plate. = ) I was overwhelmed with the choices of fish, but in the end, I ordered the Pink Snapper Aqua Pazza (Crazy Style) Hands down the best plate of fish I have ever tasted. The chef also gave me a complimentary plate of mixed raw prawns dressed with olive oil. They were very similar to the Japanese Amaebi (sweet shrimp)
but much more elegant. BONUS!

Now that the trip is just about over, I have noticed a few major differences between Italians and Americans, and I have comprised a short list.

1) Italians have no sense of standing in line. They push and cut in line, and if there is no respect for personal space. Americans are much more propper in this respect.

2) When driving in America, people love to drive slow in the fast lane. In Italy, even though people may travel slow in the left lane, they are very quick to switch into the right lane, in order to let people pass.

3) The men in Italy think its totally fine to wear a spedo and a T-shirt. Its quite a funny outfit because it looks like they are wearing no pants! (Paul, please save the gay jokes) = )

4) Americans are loud and obnoxious, Italians are quitet and obnoxious.

5) Americans are much fatter.

6) The women are much more beautiful in Italy.

7) Italians have a lot less road rage.

8) The pace of life is much slower and more romantic.

9) Its is quite normal to have dinner as late as 11 pm in Italy.

10) If a srore in the U.S. says something like. "Open from 9 AM to 7 PM Monday through Friday. I will be open at those hours, unless major emergency. In Italy, these postings mean absolutely nothing.

11) Americans wear deoderant.


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