Wednesday 3 September 2008

Dolled up for il dottore

In most small villages going out and about is a grand occasion. The women and men put on their finest threads for a stroll around town, a visit to the supermarket, when they pop to the local bar and of course the best clothes are saved for the church and visits to the doctor, lawyer etc...

I know this, and I love to get dressed up but only when I have a party to attend. If I have to attend a wedding, birthday party, nice dinner etc... then I can dress to impress, but I cannot be bothered to dress up when I am going for a walk around town. I know this is Italy so I do make a little effort...ok well not all the time but sometimes I really do make an effort!

Italians also love to go out in groups, it is rare to see an Italian alone. Not many people take a walk by themselves. Not many people walk at all. And if they do walk normally it is to go and meet some other people.

This being said when I went to the doctor's in Cosenza the other day I had a nice little entourage. Bel ragazzo was to drive us, and his mum and the brothers girlfriends mum were also coming for the trip. I am sure more people would have come but we were going to see a gynecologist so this in itself was a little more private then had it been a normal doctor. Also the car had only one spare middle seat, and parking in Cosenza can be a nightmare so we did not have space for any extras.

I was so nervous all morning about going to the doctor and I wanted to be as comfortable as possible. I made an effort by doing my hair, putting on a little mascara and I chose my nicest pair of modest shorts and a clean polo t-shirt. But when it comes to shoes 1) I almost always wear my thongs/flip flops 2) It was hot so I didn't want closed in shoes 3) I was nervous and did not want to go in heels 4) actually I never wear heels unless I am going out somewhere fancy 5) I had only packed my thongs/flip flops and runners/trainers/sneakers.

In Italy many people consider thongs/flip flops to be 'house' shoes - in that you only wear them in the house. I obviously consider them to be summer shoes and mine are rather trendy thongs/flip flops if I do say so myself.

Bel ragazzo's mum looked at my shoes and asked me if I was going to change them before going to the doctor! She was half joking as we all know that being Australian gives me certain luxuries (in the fact that I can do what I want and I don't care what anyone else thinks.) I giggled and said 'no' I was not going to change my shoes. She was all dolled up looking lovely with her hair done, a long fancy skirt, nice top, bit of lippy and the nice jewellery was out. When we picked up the brothers girlfriends mum she looked fantastic - like we were on our way to a dinner dance! She had on a black sparkly top, sparkly shoes, long black elegant skirt, her hair too was all done, lippy, nails painted - you get the drift!

In the waiting room I was met by more dolled up women. There was one lady literally about to give birth any miunte, but she still had time to put of makeup, do her hair and add a nice pair of wedges to complete the outfit. I have travelled the world a bit and have never seen people more dolled up for the doctor then they are here in Italy.


Anonymous said...

How funny! I hope you went out to eat at a restaurant afterwards. Do you think that's more of the older generation and down south?
I could see maybe going to church, but to the doctor's?

Leanne was in Italy now in Australia said...

Hi Carole,
It is more of the older generation that dress up especially in the small villages rather then the big cities. Not sure about north vs south but I imagine they are a little more dolled up down south. The young dress casual but with as many lables on show as possible! it's all about bella figura (making a good impression) here in Italy!