Rome: Christmas markets, ice skating, and other holiday activities
EuroCheapo offers a list of things to do in Rome around the holidays – including where to go to see a giant menorah lit each night of Chanukkah. (via @MyMelange on Twitter)
Best memory of Venice #7
This is a sweet post about a nice Venice memory by my blogging friend Robin – and she happens to have visited a restaurant I've been to a couple times myself!
UNESCO studies Pompeii troubles
With all the recent collapses at Pompeii, it's not surprising that a team from UNESCO has arrived at the site to see exactly what's going on. Pompeii is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and although they haven't arrived on a white horse to solve all the problems they will provide guidance. (via @italofileblog on Twitter)
L’Italia del Censis/Censis on Italy
"According to the research institute headed by Giuseppe De Rita, Italy in 2010 is a country where apathy rules, where there is no hope for the future, where people, both in the mass and individually, show signs of ‘behaviour and attitudes that are confused, indifferent, cynical and easily swayed by the mass media’." That's a grim picture, indeed. (article in Italian and English, via @ItalianMeetup on Twitter)
Acqua Alta in Venice, 3 December 2010
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The high water in Venice late last week was reportedly 136 cm – too high even for the raised walkways they always put up in St. Mark's Square, but not high enough to stop life in Venice. Check out the video at the bottom of this post and you should be able to tell who are the Venetians (prepared for the floods) and who aren't (with makeshift plastic-bag boots).
Roberts in $1.5 million coffee commercial
Wow… The coffee commercial for which Julia Roberts was paid $1.5 million doesn't even feature her saying a single word. At least George Clooney has *lines* in his Italian Nespresso ads… (via @LoveLakeComo on Twitter)
Car plows into group of cyclists in Italy, 8 dead
Sad news today from Calabria, where a car ran into a group of cyclists on a road near Lamezia Terme. Eight of the cyclists were killed. It's quite popular to go out for bike rides on Sundays in Italy when the weather is good, and evidently this crash is causing Italian cycling officials to complain "about safety problems for cyclists who have to share the roads with cars." The driver of the car was only slightly injured, and was taken into custody on multiple counts of homicide – he tested positive for marijuana.
A Roma il funerale dell’università
Students in Rome protesting the cuts to the university system held a mock funeral for the Italian university as we know it. This is from an Italian news site, but it's a photo gallery, so no Italian is necessary. (via @Roam2Rome on Twitter)
Italy to ban plastic bags
It appears Italy will be banning plastic shopping bags starting January 1, 2011, so the next time you go to a market in Italy you'll have to bring your own bags. The ban was originally proposed in 2007 and meant to go into effect in January 2010, but there was a year-long grace period for which lawmakers now say there won't be an extension. (via @MyMelange on Twitter)
Adopt an Olive Tree
I think I've mentioned this before on the site, but with the holidays coming around it's another good opportunity to remind you of what is a fun gift idea. If you "adopt an olive tree" from Tre Olive, you'll get roughly 3 liters of olive oil from that year's production. (via @MyMelange on Twitter)
The folks at Budget Travel suggest that perhaps Pompeii needs a "Save Pompeii" effort similar to the "Save Venice" group organized primarily by expats in the canal city. (via @MyMelange on Twitter)
2 fascinating (and fabulous) Florentine fashion museums
Milan may be considered the Italian hotbed of fashion, but in Florence you'll find two fashion museums. You won't walk out with a new frock, but you may gain an appreciation for how Italy got to be so fashion-forward.