Part of the adventure of being in a new culture is getting into unexpected situations. Finding that situations don't unfold as you expected them to and the rhythms are all different. My approach to this is to try my best to let go of my learned ways and feel out this new beat. See if I can get with a new grove. Sometimes it's harder than others....
On the bus one Saturday afternoon with my two punks, we were off to meet some friends at the swimming pool. The bus was filling up fast, but we sat comfortably in our seats and casually watched the crowd during our 15 min journey.
Punkone and I were seated next to each other, and ended up watching a pair of teenagers unabashedly play tonsil hockey in the seat across from us. I watched the rainbow of expressions pass across my 8 year old's face... confusion, disgust, intrigue, wonder... and chuckled to myself.
For a Catholic country, Italy can be surprisingly nonchalant about public displays of affection... no, it's more like public foreplay. Scenes like this are quite common, this just happened to be a situation in which the kissing couple was quite close to us and we were something of a captive audience. There wasn't really anything else to do but stare at them.
I took pity on Punkone's tension (since it didn't seem like they were going to let up) and told him that it looked like they were trying to taste each others stomachs... which made him burst into laughter but didn't do anything at all to distract the teenagers.
At the pool, Giulia leaned over to ask me where her goggles were and got a close up of the tongue action in the lane next to where I was swimming.
.... Latin lovers! They're everywhere!
.... which makes me think about what my kids will be doing in about 5-10 years (please let it be closer to 10). At least there won't be any uncertainty about what to do.
Maybe all this pda is not so bad... the teenage pregnancy rate in Italy is 3 births in every 1000 while in the US it is 53/1000. Like I said... trying out a different rhythm...