I have a friend named Millie who, along with her family, is lucky enough to be spending a year in Italy. We are similar people Millie and I, in similar situations and, those who look at her blog, will see we too have similar styles (hello Confit theme).
I originally met Millie at a health centre in North Sydney. We both took a Cardiolates class together which for me, as someone who hated exercising, I actually loved. How could it be exercise when you were on a trampoline bouncing around to music? Our kids also went to the same school so it was no surprise that we finally crossed paths.
Millie recently wrote a piece here about the darker side of Italy and it brought a big grin to my face when reading it.
In short Millie has taken good issue with the fact that she is in the beautiful Tuscany countryside but spends most of her life with her head down dodging poop (canine) or vomit (human) on the streets. Like I said I laughed out loud when I read this because in Turkey the pooping and spitting is rife (I have not yet spotted vomit thankfully).
The dog poop does my head in. When I left Australia I brought 10 packets of doggy poop bags with me (I am ready for approximately 1000 poops by My Hurley Dog when on our frequent walks) however I find myself picking up not just my dog’s poop but the poop from strays as well as other dogs whose owners just ignore the fact that their dog is dropping their bundle out the front of my home. It seems that the local strays have turned the little track that leads of our house into their toilet and every morning there is new and sometimes explosive doggy poop to wash away. Daughter (who is reading over my shoulder) just pointed out to me that there is horse poop also on the track. Horse poop is fine. It is fertilizer. It doesn’t even smell that bad and it is from a working horse not a stray dog.
Then there is the spitting. I know it is a common practice in Asia and the Middle East and the Turks are well versed with the ideology of hocking up your lurgy and spitting it to the ground. I accept that to them it is more appropriate to do this than to use a tissue (although I am at a loss as to why this is more appropriate) and I completely understand that some people have health issues and need to clear their passages but come on! I really have no interest in watching a middle aged, portly Turkish man (or woman!) launch a grenade-like green substance onto the street. Even worse is when I watch a young man or a child spit as they pass. I want to yell at them, “Don’t do it. You are never going to get a girlfriend” but all these boys grow into men and, of course, the circle of spit continues.
As I am typing this paragraph alone I can hear the builder’s next door working and I think I have heard at least 3 flying lurgies with such ferocity that they shook my windows. Nice! Daughter has just piped up with “Better out than in.” I am thinking about sending her from the room.
I recall reading an article last year about a Professor travelling through Asia to study the cultural differences of spitting. Well! Imagine putting that on your resume.
“Good day and nice to meet you. I am Professor Blah Blah and this class is Spitting 101.”
He sounds hot doesn’t he?
I am sorry to anyone who is offended by my giggle. I mean no personal offence. I understand it is cultural and a health issue at times, but please, I find myself dodging spit bombs as I walk down the street and wonder if I should be wearing a raincoat for protection. Daughter final input to today’s blog is the suggestion that gumboots would be necessary for protection and, of course, and to match the raincoat. Because style is important!
I will finish this by asking the question – Is Justin Bieber Turkish? Biber? Turkish word. Spitting? Hmmm.