by Melinda Gallo

Allergy season already?

When we went to Rome a little over a month ago, I had an allergic reaction to something in the air. When we were on the bus, an American woman behind me was talking and said, "I must be allergic to Rome, I haven't stopped sneezing since I got here." When I heard that, I figured, I must be allergic to something in Rome as well.

Then a few weeks go by and not a single symptom. All of a sudden a few weeks ago, I felt like I either had a cold or had an allergic reaction to something. With each passing day, my symptoms definitely felt more like an allergy.

When I went to the gym, I'd feel great afterwards. And then, in the afternoon, all my symptoms would return. I thought it was a little early to have hay fever because I assumed that started more in April.

I went to see my friend Rossana in Sesto-Fiorentino and she said, "Sei allergica al cipresso" (You're allergic to Cypress trees). I don't know all that much about trees, but I just heard recently that many churches were built with Cypress trees. And, of course, in Italy, they are all around although I'm not sure if there's one near our apartment.

I thought it was odd that when it's rainy or overcast, I don't have fewer symptoms than when it's sunny. Today, I went to the erboristeria (herbalist shop) and the woman told me, "Quando c'è il sole, l'albero fiorisce e quindi hai i sintomi più importanti." (When the sun is shining, the tree blossoms and therefore you have more severe symptoms).

With a new medicinale omeopatico (homeopathic remedy) that I was advised to take, I have hope that I might get some relief soon. Of course, the woman at the erboristeria told me that I'm about three months too late if I want something really efficient.

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