by Melinda Gallo

I realized this morning during my run that when Iím in Florence, I change my route quite often. I decide before I walk out the door which way I will go based on many factors: day of the week, time of day, weather, and my mood. I try to avoid traffic, but when I canít do that, I have a standard route that I run. Yesterday I ran that route, which is to go to Ponte da Verazzano and back. Itís one of my favorite routes because there arenít many people on the sidewalk; however, the only problem is that there are a lot of cars at Ponte San NiccolÚ.

Read More

Thereís nothing like having a document to prove my Italian citizenship. Even though I was granted Italian citizenship back in March and was only notified in June, it hadnít really sunk in. When I took my giuramento (oath) to become an official Italian citizen yesterday, I felt I had become an Italian citizen, but I kept thinking that something was missing. I couldnít wait to get my carta díidentitŗ (identity card) today because it would be the only document that would state Iím Italian. I wanted something tangible.

Read More

This morning I took my giuramento (oath) in Palazzo Vecchio and became an official Italian citizen. After playing phone tag for a few weeks with the woman at the comune (city hall), we finally set the date for me to take my giuramento today. I was so happy when my suocera (mother-in-law) asked me if she could accompany me. I didnít ask anyone to come with me, but I was happy my suocera was the person who was there when I became Italian.

Read More

This morning, I couldnít wait to visit Palazzo Pitti. I havenít been in a long time and I just felt a great desire to go today. When I returned from Paris last weekend, I had two big events to attend: the George Michael concert in Piazza Santa Croce and the Fiorentina soccer match at Franchi Stadium. Besides meeting up with friends and family, I didnít have much time to soak up my beloved city except in the morning during my runs and walks.

Read More

I realized this morning when I went for a walk up to Piazzale Michelangiolo how different my life is when Iím in Florence and when Iím in Paris. When I was in Paris, I went running every day and only took one day off. Now that Iím back in Florence, I went running the first day, took a day off and went for a walk two days in a row. I like how in Florence I have more time to enjoy the day and take it a little slower.

Read More

Thereís a big piece of me that stays in Florence when I leave. It wasnít until I got on the plane to go to Paris that I realized that my writerís voice seemed to get quieter as I flew away from Florence. I found it odd how each time Iím in Paris, my desire to write becomes weaker. At first, I thought it was because when I go to Paris I focus on my job and write a lot, but the day before I returned to Florence, that little voice came back to me.

Read More