10 Things Expats Need to Know


View of Rome from Vittoriano

You have taken the leap, signed the contract and landed in a new country. Whether it is your first assignment or you have been doing this for decades there are a few things that you can do to make your life as an expat just a little bit easier.

After recently contributing to an expat tip campaign myself over on HiFX (see here), I thought I would share with you the 10 things expats need to know before moving abroad.

Ethnic Food in Rome {Indian Fast Food}


Ethnic Food in Rome {Indian Fast Food}

The other morning after shopping at the Nuovo Mercato Esquillino, also known as the Piazza Vittorio market I was starving. When I am in this part of town I usually stop for a slice of warm from the oven piazza bianca from the always busy and cheerful Roscioli on via Michelangelo Buonarroti. Stocking up on big bunches of fresh cilantro, fiery Thai chilies and Vietnamese fish sauce had really worked up my appetite for something with a little more zing. I made a beeline for Indian Fast Food.

Palazzos in Rome {Palazzo Sacchetti}


Palazzo Sacchetti // Rome

Palazzo Sacchetti // Rome

So many of Rome's treasures are accessible. I walk past the Coliseum and the Forum at least three or four times a day. You can see dramatic Caravaggio paintings in several churches dotted about town. Byzantine mosaics, church relics, grand baroque fountains and vine covered alleys are all yours for the proverbial taking.

But Rome is a city of secrets too. She hides away many of her charms behind closed doors and complicated bureaucracy. These capricious treasures are available to you often only through sheer good fortune.

Last week I was invited to peek behind one of these closed doors by the team behind the beautiful website Italian Ways. A group of Italian and American bloggers, historians and Instagrammers spent a sunny Saturday morning learning about the elegant via Guilia and the Palazzo Sacchetti designed by Antonio da Sangallo in the mid-500's. If you have watched Paolo Sorrentino's sumptuous award winning film, La Grande Bellezza, you have seen glimpses of this extraordinary place.

Rome through Fellini's Eyes


About life in Rome I often say "Fellini is not fiction" The chaos and grit are just as much a part of Rome as the beauty and the light. You can not have one without the other. This juxtaposition of the eponymous sacred and profane is what makes me love Rome so.  

The Rome that Director Federico Fellini showed us in his films is indeed the "real"  Rome. He often spoke of his lack of distinction between realism and imagination.  In Rome today as in the time of Fellini you can have coffee in Piazza del Popolo, walk the beautiful via Margutta and indulge in the pastries he so loved. While you enjoy these pleasures, you will most likely dodge errant scooters and be besieged with crowds and noise. That is La Dolce Vita. 

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