About Rick Zullo
You might say that I’m living the dream.  A few years ago I came to Italy on an extended vacation (I called it a “sabbatical” just to make it sound impressive, but let’s be honest…).  About midway through that trip, I wound up in Rome and I fell in love with the city on that first night.  On the second night, I fell in love with one of its inhabitants (who is now my wife).  So a few weeks later I returned to the US, settled up my affairs, applied for a visa, and came back to Rome to live.  It was the best decision that I’ve ever made. Read more about Rick and his blog here.

Italian Citizenship through your blood right
Ciao a tutti!  Today I have a special guest blogger who is going to explain the process of obtaining Italian citizenship through the blood line.  I’m sure many of you have heard of this option and perhaps some of you may have even done a little of your own research.   If so, then you’ve already discovered how confusing it can be.  I attempted to do it myself last year, but I got frustrated at a certain point and abandoned my efforts.  But Valerie has successfully completed the journey and  has had her blood line officially recognized by the Italian government.  What’s more, she kept careful records of each step along the way and now has a wealth of practical knowledge on the subject.  I read her book a couple of weeks ago and found it to be extremely clear and helpful.  I only wish I had known about it sooner!  So without out further ado, I will let her summarize the process for you. Read more here.

A Few More Thoughts on Teaching English to Italians
In the spirit of fair play, I will eventually invite an Italian teacher to my blog so that she can make fun of all us Americans who are trying to master the language of Dante.  Every population has its unique challenges when learning a foreign language.  Perhaps we Americans are the most tongue-tied of all, living in a country that is more or less linguistically isolated and culturally homogeneous.  What we sometimes refer to as “dialects” in the U.S. are really not much more than minor regional accents, and even these have very little variation relative to the size of our country.  Especially when compared to Italians, we all speak the exact same language in the United States. Read more here.

Lo Sciopero and Other Calamities 
Last week in Rome there was a “sciopero,” or general transportation strike.  This is a fairly common occurrence in Italy, but for the uninformed American it can be a difficult thing to wrap your mind around.  In a nutshell, it is a day when all public transportation is suspended—BUT the buses, trains, and metros still run during peak rush hour, so that normal working people at least have a fighting chance to get to work. Read more here.