This past week has been a busy one and so I have not had much time to blog. In addition, I have been swept up by the events at Virginia Tech and find myself glued to the news almost every night. When people ask me how it feels to be back in the states, I tell them I am happy.
Just a few things I’ve taken note of this week alone:
1. I can go shopping on the Sunday, as most major stores are open. We usually like to go on at least one shopping trip together as a family on the weekends.
2. At the park, Veronica and I see scores and scores of different faces, Indian, South African, Caucasian, Filipino, African-American, Asian and many interracial children and couples.
3. Ethnic food is affordable.
4. My neighbors are not suspicious of me. Perfect case in point, I noticed a woman in my apartment complex living here also a temporary basis. Since I am from the area, (she is from Texas), I asked if she needed help finding a way around. She informed me she has three kids that were dying for McDonald’s, some library books and a place to play. I drew her a map of the closest grocery store, library and playground. I even accompanied her to Circuit City where she found a replacement for her GPS navigator. It felt good to offer help to a neighbor and even better, when she accepted it. Next week we plan on getting the kids together and heading to the Children’s Museum in Seattle.
5. Being close to my sister and some great friends enriches my life and Veronica’s life more than I can say.
Still after all these blessings, I still feel a bit of hesitance in saying that America is better than Italy. Part of me believes it yet part of me does not. The perfect case in point being all the violence that I’m seeing on the news every night. A friend of mine that lives in Umbria ( she used to live in Washington, DC) told me the biggest difference, or one of the biggest differences about her life in Italy is that it is much less violence all around her.
Let me be the first to say I have no idea, percentage wise, what the differences in violent crime are in America versus Italy. But off the top of my head I dare to say America‘s numbers are higher than Italy. In Italy, I was very careful to keep my pocketbook zipped away in my purse and to make sure my cell phone was not in plain view. Little petty crimes were a nuisance but never once did I feel that I was in danger of being bodily harmed. I have seen men jump out of cars at traffic lights in Rome and wave their fists at one another. I have seen at the post office when someone cuts in line. I have seen more than one person annoyed that someone has doubled parked behind them. I have never been afraid of someone pulling out a gun and firing it. (Even though the Italian police routinely carry machine guns, in front of synagogues and especially at the airport.)
When I watch MSNBC “To Catch a Thief”, “To Catch a Predator”, or “To Catch a Con Man” (undercover investigations involving identity theft, sexual predators and or scams) I wonder If these things go on in Italy. I am sure they do but they are just not publicized. If anybody has some real statistics please point me to them as I’m interested in knowing what the truth really is.
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