The group meets weekly in the leader's home on Thursday afternoons at 2:30, except 3rd Thursday
We are a small but keen group of people who enjoy visiting Italy and being able to talk to Italians in their own language. Italy has so much to offer, from the crystalline seas and sunshine of Sicily and other islands to the towering mountains and lovely lakes of the Alps; from such cultural gems as Assisi, Siena and Ravenna to the architectural and artistic glories of Rome, Milan, Venice, Florence and Naples, and not forgetting the gastronomic delights of Bologna and almost any Italian city you care to name.
Pre Lockdown, bearing in mind the language we may need or encounter on our travels, we have spent some time reading and talking about life, dwellings, crafts and cuisine in the Middle Ages; cars, pollution, driving and contacting a garage in case of breakdown; the main bones of the human body, especially those one could break; and two sessions on Naples, which one of the group had recently visited. There was also a session on nutrition and one on Black Friday.
Since March. conversation has not been possible; suggestions of virtual meetings were not met with favour, so the leader started by sending out news articles, with questions, crosswords to revise and increase vocabulary, and then questions for discussion on specific themes for debate: answers would be corrected and then shared to all. As this became too much for many people – with the lovely weather people hardly want to be in front of a computer screen for hours – we have joined forces with the other Italian group and are sending material on alternate weeks.
Recent themes have been around sense perception (how do the blind use their other senses, for example), how we are coping with lockdown, books we are reading, the pleasures of spring, Italian folk-songs etc. We send links to articles, podcasts and occasionally some grammar revision exercises. We also recommend watching “Non uccidere” (Thou shalt not kill) on All 4.
It would be nice to meet up for a caffé or a prosecco in someone’s garden - whenever we consider it safe. I wonder whether we can make that happen?