Italy, the entire country, is a battlefield of touristy sights in itself. The Colosseum, David, any of the Duomos, The Sistine Chapel, they all were breathtaking. But I think, what is even more amazing than the hundreds and thousand year old sights, is the food culture.
Despite all the breathtaking views at the amazing sights, nothing compares quite to the very first meal you get when sitting down for the very first time. At least, that holds very true for my family and their first meal in Italy. I picked them up at the Roman Airport, squeezed them in into a 9-seat bus and refused to stop anywhere between Rome and Sorrento.
By then, my 2-year old niece was the only one, still in a good mood. My brothers fell asleep in the back of the rental. My mom and my aunt kept chit chatting about all world-changing events. My friend Ams was sleeping next to me in the front seat and my dad was driving. Meanwhile I directed them through Southern Italy and I am still amazed by my own sense of direction.
Somehow we made it to Sorrento and let me tell you, when starving, my family is no fun, no fun at all. Eventually we got to the villa, where A’s family was anxiously awaiting the arrival of my family. Bear in mind, they have never met each other before and were all a bit, well, let’s say excited.
A and I talked about this day many times, we discussed it often and we both had these horrific pictures in our minds, how all of a sudden my part of the family would say something inappropriate met by glaring eyes and strong comments by A’s family, a war breaking out all the whilst A and I were giving our vows. We played out every worst case scenario, that we could possibly imagine and painted some mere pictures about how after the wedding no one would talk to us ever again. How we would have to explain to our future kids, that it was a social experiment going horribly wrong, because we attempted to connect two families from two different places, living in two different settings, uniting them one day.
To be quite honest though, all of this is the drama of A talking, because I never imagined it going that horribly wrong. I think I viewed our families more like orca families in the ocean: The ocean is so big, that when orcas, that don’t like each other meet, they can put an entire ocean between each other without ever having a war breaking out.
It turns out, that we both (mainly A) feared for nothing. Against all odds (mainly the ones we made out in our heads), it worked out great. Nobody’s feelings got hurt, everyone was happy (at least from where I was sitting it seemed that way), everyone was in a good mood and A and I could have not asked for a better wedding party.
So, let me recap, nothing compares to the first real Italian meal you will ever taste, or when two families meet for the very first time and all your worries get swept away, because there was absolutely nothing to worry about. And even less compares to having all your favorite people in one room, celebrating your special day with you. That, above all, is the greatest feeling in the world.