How to Almost Get Your Italian Residency Permit

Old iron gate with spikes partially lowered over stone arch

Italy is a gorgeous country with delectable food and fascinating history, but (1) You already know that. (2) It’s more fun to write about dumpster fires. So, here’s another one of my infernos.


Casa Dolce Casa (aka We Told You Not to Move)

Apartment building with balconies

The gurgle of an air conditioner dying is a most terrible sound.

7 Reasons You Might Be Sick, According to Nonna

Sick person under bed covers

“But it’s good for your cholesterol!” she protested before going on the stoop to smoke.

Being a Pacifist (or How Americans Can Avoid Getting Punched in the Face in Europe)

Silhouette of peace fingers against sky

Despite my best efforts to avoid a fight on the first day of school, I have to flee a brawl.

Becoming Italian Part 2 (or How to Get Legit in Italy – Codice Fiscale + Tessera Sanitaria)

Italian jets in sky form colors of Italian flag next to angel statue

We head to Agenzia delle Entrate to get my codice fiscale (more or less an Italian social security number) and tessera sanitaria, a card that will allow me to enroll in the public health system in Italy (suck it, Paul Ryan).

Flying Solo (or How to Bond with Your Italian In-Laws)

Pouring coffee into multiple cups

In a jet-laggy fog, I wish Alberto good luck -- it’s his first day at a new job and my first Monday alone in a foreign city.

Going Commando (or How to Move to Italy)

We plowed over women and children in our rush to make the connection from New York to Milan, arriving an hour late from MSP. It was a good crash course in shedding my passive-aggressive Minnesotan skin to become an aggressive-aggressive Italian, but karma bit us in the culo.