Kathryn speaks to Veronica, the voice behind 'The Dangerously Truthful Diary of a Sicilian Housewife', about her love for the beautiful island of Sicily.
Reading the blog ‘The Dangerously Truthful Diary of a Sicilian Housewife’ is almost guaranteed to put a smile on your face. It is witty, enchanting and daringly truthful and always fun to read. The author, Veronica, was originally from London so when I had the chance to catch-up with her recently I was curious to know how it all began.
Veronica explained “I visited Palermo ten years ago for a wedding and it was literally love at first sight. Within a year I was living in a fishing village called Aspra, married and expecting our little boy.”
And who could blame her…
“I live surrounded by the history of three millennia and a dozen empires. Ten minutes from my house there’s a 3,000-year-old city founded by North Africans. Twenty minutes away there’s a Catholic cathedral built by Muslims, a Norman palace, a baroque Spanish church in a cave, and the biggest Art Deco post office in the world. I also have a beach one minute from my house and an ice-cream parlour on the way!”
Ten years after that first fateful trip to Sicily, Veronica, has enjoyed getting to know this very special island. She has the following advice for first-time visitors.
“Talk to people and ask Sicilians to tell you the local history. There is a fascinating or hilarious story behind almost everything in Sicily, and these stories never make it into the guide books.
Try to learn a little Italian if you can.
Read about typical Sicilian foods and make a point of seeking out all of them. Where else can you eat manna, a spleen sandwich, and chocolate made to a thousand-year-old Aztec recipe?”
As Veronica got to know the island she found that the Sicily of the movies and the media has nothing to do with the real Sicily.
“My friends all wanted to know what this place is really like. I started blogging when my son started school – at last I had free time!
My readers’ comments make it so worthwhile – otherwise there would be no point. Meeting people in real life whom I’ve befriended through my blog is uniquely satisfying.”
And her favourite subjects to write about and which are most popular?
“My mother-in-law of course, a.k.a. “The Godmother”. She has a collection of cleaning chemicals including hydrochloric acid and carbolic acid, with which she scrubs floors until the tiles no longer have any glaze on them. She owns a saucepan larger than herself, in which she cooks spaghetti for forty people but could also fit a dead body. Her hands could spank a fully grown man into low-earth orbit.
I’m not scared of her when I blog, because the only English word she knows is “Cuppatino” which is a drink she makes me by putting a teabag inside her cappuccino machine.
My photo posts of beautiful places in Sicily get the most Facebook shares, but the “diary” posts get the most chatty comments. I think people like those best because they make people laugh and I’m not afraid to show my flaws."
And she is brutally honest. If she says a place is paradise, it is, and….
“If we drove past a heap of rubbish like the Himalayas on our way into town or got tangled up in a washing line festooned with humongous knickers while touring a Baroque mansion I’ll say that too.”
And her favourite place in Sicily?
“There are so many heavenly places in Sicily it is impossible to choose one, but I think the Baroque town of Noto in south-eastern Sicily is possibly the most beautiful city I’ve ever seen. There is literally not an ugly – or even a mediocre – view anywhere.”
Image credit: Noto by Dalibor Kastratovic | Shutterstock
Blog: The Dangerously Truthful Diary of a Sicilian Housewife
Facebook page: Veronica-Di-Grigoli
Photography courtesy of Veronica unless otherwise stated.
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