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November 9, 2010

“Ma non ti fa fatica?” An old man asks me as I jog up a narrow Tuscan road.  Aren’t you getting tired?

Another day, another man: “Ma questa corre anche nella pioggia!” This girl even runs in the rain. (It was drizzling.  Barely.)

I just got back from a jog around my neighborhood.  For the first time since last winter, I experienced the peculiar frustration of my earbuds falling out of my ear because the wire had frozen.  After daylight savings time, it really feels like winter, and I really don’t want it to be winter.

The whole experience took me back in time to my semester in Italy.  Dallas and I discovered that despite the joy we found in running along the narrow and winding roads, past vineyards and seemingly endless olive trees, throughout our hilly Tuscan town, no Italians actually did that.  Especially not girls.  Anyone we passed (usually a sweet old man with a cane and hat, out for a walk) glanced at us with the specific combination of interest, disbelief, and bemusement that looked out at us from every Italian face when we did horribly American things like order an iced coffee or eat a salad as a meal.

Jogging means being seen in public in an embarrassing condition.  It means exposing yourself to the elements without the proper attire.

What do Italians do?  They walk.  Many a Sunday afternoon did I see entire Italian families of three generations partaking in una camminata, a stroll through the town center or countryside, at a pace leisurely enough to permit the wearing of one’s best clothes and nicest shoes.

What did I do?  I brought my camera on my jog.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. November 9, 2010 10:02 pm

    Beth! I love your blog. Nonni and I are having a blast reading your wonderful Italian! Your photos are wonderful too!

  2. Lindsay Maitland Hunt permalink
    November 9, 2010 10:04 pm

    I love this post! Jogging as a tourist is a great way to find out about new and exciting things.

  3. November 10, 2010 7:07 am

    LOL this is a really cool post, hehe. I wouldn’t go jogging with my camera though, I would end up taking too many random photos and less jog :p

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