- 1.Coffee is not a "thing" after 11 a.m. Yes, I know. Most Starbucks lines are bumpin' at 11 a.m. back in the states, and people are just getting in their first cup of Jo'. However, if you go to a café in Rome after 11 and order a cappuccino, don't expect to leave without some giggles from the barista. God forbid you order an iced coffee (how American) without having the barista try and throw some alcohol in your cup.
- 2. Leggings are also not a "thing". Why did I choose Rome? Great question! I should have done more research on the fashion in Roma prior to picking my destination. Walking out of your apartment with leggings on is almost as bad as walking out of your apartment with your bra on backwards. So save your money on that olive green pair of Lulu Lemons' you've been dying to have, and invest in some fancy new denim. Unless, of course, you want Leonardo and Giulia glaring at you all the way down Viale Trastevere.
- 3.There is no such thing as hurrying. Picture the hustle and bustle of N.Y.C, Chicago, or even Milwaukee at 7 a.m. on a Monday. You probably imagined rush hour traffic, and business men and women impatiently waiting for their coffee at the McDonald's drive thru. Rome? Everyday is the weekend! Yes, there are men walking in suits everywhere, but why not relax and enjoy a Cornetti and espresso at the local café before taking on the day? Feeling run down at 1 p.m.? Perfect timing! This is when everyone leaves work, school, etc., to leisurely munch on a Panini and spritz. Now, this is why I chose Italy!
- 4. Don't…rush….dinner. NOT kidding. It is considered rude, and disrespectful if you have the intentions of rapid dining. Italians like to truly dine because they take immense pride in their food. They strongly believe a dinner should be 4 courses. Not saying you have to indulge every time you go out to dinner, but at least take the time to relax and savor the food they have prepared for you. Sometimes, the pasta will even be made directly in front of you! Also, they will not bring you your check unless you ask for it. Like I said before, zero hurry whatsoever.
- 5.Gelato is heavenly: But not needed everyday (especially if you're lactose intolerant!) Gelateria's are literally everywhere in Rome, and Italy in general, and even in Spain (nice try). Every time you walk by you will be tempted to stop. So many of my friends stop at our favorite place once, sometimes twice, a day. Use it as a treat, and it makes it taste that much better. Pro tip: If the Gelateria has banana gelato, make sure it is not bright yellow. If it is, it is totally artificial.2nd pro tip: Pistachio and biscotti are the real deal, hands down!
So, these are just a few things I have learned about the social aspect of Rome so far. Although the culture is quite different from what I am used to, Rome has been so welcoming to my very unworldly-self.