Rainy Winter in Milan

January 24, 2014

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Well it’s winter in Milan. And like all of the previous years, I am cursing the cold weather that comes with the season. It’s even worse now that I am living abroad though. Being from Texas, I am not exactly used to the freezing temperatures and constant rain that Milan has so graciously provided for the past three weeks. Without stopping. Once.

As it is said, “These are the times that try [women’s] souls”– if we care to get literal. I find that my affinity for the South (of the United States, that is) always grows stronger when I am abroad and especially when I am abroad in a place that is cold and rainy. I had the same lateral longings while I was living in England during the winter a few years ago. I don’t care what anyone says, a lack of sunlight really does affect a person’s personality during the winter. It certainly does mine.

Winter in Milan
Winter in Milan

So what do I mean when referencing my fondness for the South? I mean a whole bunch of feel-good southern movies and an insane amount of migas. If any of you are from Austin, or just Texas in general, you will understand right away why migas is a necessary staple for survival outside of the South.

Not only have I been crying with the rest of the Steel Magnolias, but I’ve been eating Fried Green Tomatoes with Ruth and Idgie and rooting for Jake and Melanie to just work things out so she can ‘kiss him anytime she wants.’ Let’s not forget Madea too. A tour through southern cinema wouldn’t be complete without referencing Tyler Perry’s creation and the hours upon hours of laughter that she’s gotten out of me!

Before you start up with the lecture, yes, I know I live in Milan. Yes, I know I am fortunate. But that sure as heck doesn’t mean that I don’t yearn for completely unhealthy, yet savory, tex-mex and southern food, or the occasional warmth that comes with the weather in the south. For me, since I associate my family and happy memories with that region, I will always go back to it, if only in my head, when the present is too cold and rainy for my liking.

On that note, I have a date with some handsome southern gentlemen for a movie night, something about a “Brother” and “Where Art Thou?” I will save my pining for margaritas for the next post.

About L. Gabrielle Castagno

Gabrielle Castagno began traveling at the age of 16, and has been hooked ever since. Gabrielle has ventured to over 9 different countries, most recently residing in Milan, Italy where she was an ESL teacher. She now works with a refugee resettlement agency in Dallas, Texas and is involved with numerous human rights initiatives throughout the US. A dual Italian-American citizen, Gabrielle hopes to return to Italy soon, to work with refugees there.

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