In Monday's class, we were watching a few snippets from Il commissario Montalbano, including the famous, or infamous, scene generally known as La colazione del dottor Pasquano - from the 2017 episode, Un covo di vipere - in which the Sicilian term cabbasisi or cabasisi, features both prominently and hilariously - yes, we are a bunch of 14 year old teenage boys at heart! Cabbasisi or cabasisi, Wikipedia informs, derived from the arabic ḥabb ‘azīz (حَبّ عَزِيز) - multifariously translated in Italian as: bacca dolce (sweet berry); bacca rinomata (renowned berry); mandorla buona (yummy almond) - and originally referred to the small marble-sized edible tubers produced, apparently, by a plant by the botanical name of cypress esculentus, commonly known as the yellow nutsedge - in Italian, il cipero dolce.
The small edible tubers which according to one source, "are chewy and taste a little like almond and pecan", and according to another, hanno un sapore simile a quello delle noci o delle mandorle amare; and to another still: hanno un sapore dolce, oleoso, simile a quello delle nocciole e delle mandorle allo stesso tempo; bear a bewildering variety of names: tiger nut, in English; chufa, in Spanish; xufa, in Valencian; dolcichini, babbagigi, mandorle di terra, nocciole di terra, in Italian; bagigi, in Veneto (even though the term now seems to refer exclusively to le noccioline americane, peanuts, in English), bacicci, in Tuscan and, in sicilian, cabbasisi or cabasisi.
Apart from it's original identification with the marble-sized edible tuber, we find, in 18th Century Sicilian dictionaries, cabbasisi, or cabasisi, defined also as an interjection: Cabbasisi! Mi è cascato il telefonino nel water! ; Tiger nuts! My mobile phone has dropped in the toilet bowel! - or something to that effect.
Later still, as Rocco Luigi Nichil, relates in his wonderful article on the language of Montalbano posted on the Treccani site: la parola è poi passata ad indicare, probabilmente per via della forma (passaggio metaforico non raro in italiano come nei dialetti), gli organi genitali maschili. Liberally translated: perhaps due to its shape - some would uncharitably argue, also due to its size - cabbasisi, or cabasisi, went on to refer to the testis of the human male. A shift in meaning not uncommon in Italian, as in the dialects - as learners of Italian soon discover to their unamused bewilderment: Non mi rompere le scatole! (don't break my boxes!); Non mi rompere le barbabietole! (don't break my beetroots!). The latter doesn't exist, as yet, but you can see that there is definite potential for a metaphorical shift. Ultimately, as a non-Sicilian, cabbasisi, or cabasisi, has a funny sound to it, like one of the standard Italian words for tiger nuts: babbagigi. Oddly enough, if one says: domani vado ad Assisi; nobody laughs. Add a "cab", as if it were a prefix, to "Assisi"; say it in a ludicrous tone, and it's hugely amusing!
However, it's not about cabbasisi, or cabasisi that we want to talk about! Rather another word which I'm sure you've never heard: guallera. It's a neapolitan term, the "g" is practically silent, and it means "hernia", specifically, apparently, and, most significantly, "scrotal hernia", to be precise, which, apparently, is quite painful, impedes graceful, effortless motion, and is, possibly, debilitating. As with cabbasisi, or cabasisi, it derives from an arabic word, in this case the word for hernia: "wadara”. This morning, as I was watching Il Fatto Quotidiano's daily online news video update, I was amusingly surprised to hear the director of the online version of the paper, Peter Gomez - who happens to be a milanese - say, referring to il PD, il Partito Democratico, whose newly elected leader - following the resignation of Nicola Zingaretti, the brother of Luca Zingaretti, by the way, who plays the part of Montalbano - Enrico Letta, has suggested appointing female leaders to the various factions - yes, factions - within the party: Abbiamo rotto la (g)uallera a tutti!, that is: "we (speaking for the PD) have broken everyone's scrotal hernia by talking about bringing about, or engendering gender balance within the party since the fall of the Roman Empire (my interpretation) and it's time we put our words into action!" It was very funny!
Relying on Francesco Pipitone's excellent article published on VesuvioLive.it, (g)uallera, following, like cabbasisi, a passaggio metaforico, a "semantic or metaphorical shift" of its own, is used in neapolitan in phrases such as: abbuffà ‘a guallera, meaning "to annoy, to render tedious, to bother; a very "colorita e volgare" way to suggest that a certain person or situation has become so insufferable as to abbuffare, a neapolitan verb which means "to inflate", "gonfiare" in italian, the scrotum leading to the debilitating consequences alluded to earlier: M’hê abbuffato ‘a guallera!, that is “Mi hai scocciato”, "you've annoyed me..big time!"; or Tonino c’ha abbuffato ‘a guallera!, “Tonino ci ha scocciati”, "Tonino (Little Tony) has annoyed us...big time!; and, of course, like the standard Italian "scocciarsi " or "rompersi le...", it can be used riflexively (actually, pronominally): m’aggio abbuffatto ‘a guallera!, “Mi sono scocciato!”, I'm fed up...big time!.
Another very useful phrase involving la guallera (yes, it is feminine!) is: essere na guallera. If you are crazy enough to be driving in Naples, and the driver in front of you has a modicum of sanity, and is not intent on running over every nun, Franciscan friar, and alter boy, attempting to cross the street in Naples, you may want to shout to him or her: si na guallera!, you are a scrotal hernia and you are causing me considerable discomfort!
A further useful phrase is: che guallera! While you are waiting in line at the Uffizi Gallery, you can look at the unfortunate person beside you, blow out your cheeks, perform a flapping motion with your hands in proximity to the groin area (see Alma Editore video below) and say: Che guallera!; "Che seccatura!" or "Che palle!”, in Italian; What a pain! If you keep repeating it, accompanied by the appropriate gesture, in a very loud voice, you'll find that the line will dissipate quite quickly! For inspiration watch a Nanni Moretti film.
You're probably wondering: "How do I pronounce these?". True. You could come to class of course, and ask your teacher. Giorgia will jump at the opportunity, and add a few milanese ones of her own. Martina will most probably blush and be too embarassed to help you, even though, I'm certain, there are some wonderful equivalent expressions in bergamasco! Giacomo? just ignore him! In truth, these expressions are a lot of fun but best not to attempt to use them unless you are in the company of very good friends equipped with a good sense of humour. Also, be aware that, if you manage to use one of the above expressions in an intelligible manner, at the appropriate moment, in the appropriate circumstance, your good neapolitan friends will not only laugh their heads off, but will erect a statue for you on the spot, which will be completely covered in graffiti within seconds!
During my considerable research on cabbasisi, or cabasisi, and guallera, I came across a truly wonderful video - posted in antiquity, in 2009, but still intelligible - by a youing woman called Karina, who talks about the word guallera. Please do watch it as it is truly incredibly funny! So, below, you'll find Peter Gomez's Abbiamo rotto la (g)uallera a tutti!, Karina's hilarious discussion of the word guallera, an excellent video by Alma Editore on Italian gestures - "our" gesture is at 1:19 and 3:04 - and, of course, La colazione del dottor Pasquano. Buona visione!
You'll find Karina's video in full here.
L'anno scorso, a novembre e dicembre, è andato in onda sul canale televisivo inglese Channel 5 una serie davvero bellissima di quattro puntate, Alex Polizzi's Italian Islands, condotta appunto da Alex Polizzi - popolare presentatrice inglese di origine italiana del programma The Hotel Inspector - in cui la simpaticissima Alex ci conduce in Sardegna, a Capri e Ischia, a Filicudi e Salina, e in Sicilia. Ecco un bell'articolo apparso in The Telegraph Travel il 26 novembre 2015, in cui Alex racconta il suo rapporto con le isole che visita nella serie:
Last year, in November and December, a truly lovely four part series, Alex Polizzi's Italian Islands, was screened on the English television channel Channel 5 . In the series, Alex Polizzi, the popular presenter of the programme The Hotel Inspector , takes us on a visit to the islands of Sardegna, Capri and Ischia, Filicudi and Salina, and Sicily. Here's a lovely article published in The Telegraph Travel on the 26th of November, in which Alex writes about her relationship with the islands she visits in the series:
I am often asked just how Italian I feel. I am inescapably Italian. My heritage, my Roman Catholic upbringing, everything I cook and so many childhood memories underlie my British education, my London upbringing and most of my working life.
After the last series for Channel 5, for which I travelled from north to south of mainland Italy, I could not ignore the islands.
Italy was united only in 1871. Each region still feels unique, keeping individual traditions, food specialities and dialects. Any Italian still now will say that they are Milanese, or Roman, or Venetian, rather than Italian. We are a people forged from our sense of place, and the intervening years of nationhood have done nothing to change that.
What is true on the mainland is exacerbated on the islands. The island character is a very special one. It takes great strength of mind and individualism to live on a rock, in the middle of the sea, cut off from mainland life whenever the weather takes against you.
I find islanders fascinating. My Polizzi grandmother was Sardinian. While I was growing up, my sister and I were never allowed to travel there because of the fears of kidnapping. This meant that I never saw her house in Genoni, a suburb of Cagliari, and I tried very hard to find out more about her and her family at the Cagliari Record Office.
The highlight of my days in Sardinia was my trip to the interior, to the wild and austere National Park at Su Gorropu, part of the chain of mountains called the Supramonte. The park covers hectares of land, and is infamous as the region where the bandits kept their kidnap victims and evaded capture by the police.
I had no immediate affinity with the landscape. It is so different from the Italy that is usually celebrated – the Italy of olive groves and rolling hills, fortified towns, endless coastlines and staggering architectural beauty. Instead, there is a brutal and unforgiving lunarscape; much land and very few people.
I was treated to a lunch of suckling pig by Zio Cicciu, an 80-year-old who is the last remaining full-time shepherd in the park. His solitary life would be anathema to most of us, but he overrides the objections of his family to continue living in the “old way”, milking his goats, with television his only concession to modern life.
Another clinging to the traditions of the past is Chiara, the last person to weave silk from the beard of the clam. She has to make about 100 dives to gather enough beard to make 10 metres of clam silk. She spoke to me of a life of self-sacrifice and hardship, producing objects of shimmering beauty that she never sells, as that would be traducing the compact she has made with the spirits of the sea.
Sardinia is the site of a fascinating project, with a laboratory and researchers who you might expect to be working on a project of this importance in an American facility. In Lanusei, Progenia is tracking the genetic make-up of the largest group of centenarians in Europe by population; its former inaccessibility means that most of its population is genetically related.
Three of my grandparents lived into their late 90s, and my great-grandmother died at 104, so my memories of them are fairly recent and vivid. It was hard not to be emotional when I took part in one centenarian’s birthday party in Sardinia, surrounded by his myriad grandchildren and great-grandchildren, remembering similar celebrations in my past.
When I was a child, I often saw Capri from a distance, usually to the chorus of my aunts begging my grandfather to allow the captain of his boat to moor in the harbour for a night – rather than the quiet coves my grandfather preferred – so that they could go out and enjoy the bella vita, the bars and nightclubs that Capri offered. My aunts were usually denied, as my grandfather’s idea of a perfect holiday did not include participating in – what was already then – an expensive and showy mooring.
Capri was incredibly sexy in the Fifties and Sixties, with absolutely anybody who was anybody from intellectual life (Jean-Paul Sartre and Graham Greene), the film set (Greta Garbo, Elizabeth Taylor, Noël Coward), millionaires and the fashion crowd brushing shoulders. Every louche playboy and starlet in Europe landed, drank and partied there.
I can now boast that Jackie Onassis and I have shared one luxury. Like her, I had a pair of sandals made by Canfora, hers by the grandfather of the present owner.
These days, though, on the whole, the day-trippers make the experience of the main drag rather an unpleasant one. The inaccessibility of the narrow paths ensure that most tourists don’t go beyond the beaten tracks, however, so I was able to see a Capri that was usually only enjoyed by the locals.
There is an admirable group, “Capri is mine too”, who have decided to take back the villas and vistas abandoned by the local government as revenues have fallen. They dedicate their spare time to making the historic areas of Capri pristine again and have found an unexpected community spirit. I met them in Villa Lysis, the erstwhile home of Baron Fersen, who found acceptance for his homosexuality, and lived an excessive life on the island. Capri was a byword for inclusion before the term was even coined.
In comparison, Ischia hides its light under a bushel. Oddly for an island, the regional speciality is rabbit. No one I spoke to could explain why. I ate the most astonishing meal at Il Focolare with the owner, Riccardo, who elucidated the particular methodology that dictated the serving of a portion of rabbit. After several glasses of wine, I was in no mood to take up cudgels on behalf of Ischian women, who traditionally got not even a morsel of the least favoured cut of the animal.
La Mortella is the life’s work of an Argentinian, Susana Walton, who created the garden to provide her husband, the composer William Walton, with an inspirational place to work. This was one of the moments on the trip that inspired me most. All these years travelling in Italy, and I had no idea that this place even existed.
Here, I also found the European Institute of Restoration. The headquarters are in a medieval castle, which can be reached only across a castellated stone bridge from the mainland. The only access is via an antiquated lift. To add to its James Bond feel, the Institute is entirely staffed by stunning young women, dressed in white lab coats and working in complete concentrated silence on their various projects. The men in my team were lost for words.
I have been in love with the Aeolian Islands ever since I was first taken to Filicudi by a boyfriend in the Nineties. When you approach Filicudi by sea, she takes the form of a heavily pregnant woman lying on her back. It is one of those special places we all have, that resists too much analysis, and I dreaded returning and being disappointed.
Pecorini Mare and the restaurant there have assumed near mythical status in my memories. The restaurant has changed hands and added bedrooms, but I needn’t have worried. The house wine was still extraordinary and I had probably the best meal of my entire trip, raw tuna and fried baby squid, and the magical feeling that nothing important had changed in the almost two decades since I was there last.
I had no preconceptions of Salina, which I had never visited. It is an unusual success story. It produces the most exquisite sweet wine from the Malvasia grape; a grape that found great favour with the British troops stationed in Messina in the 1800s. The vines were reintroduced after a phylloxera epidemic but they are not the only green gold that the island produces.
I stayed at a luxury hotel, Signum, where the determination to use local produce found me trying caper ice cream – yuck! – and a caper face mask – yum!
I know Sicily better than I know almost any other region of Italy. Twice in my 20s I took road trips that included the coast, more obviously, and then the interior.
Palermo scares many a traveller. It is known as the seat of the Mafia and, rather like New York in the old days, we are warned off going off the beaten track and falling into the badlands. The reality is of a decaying but incredibly vibrant city, with sublime street food, marvellous architecture and a generation of inhabitants who have refused to bow down to the Mafia, shocked into taking a stand by the murder of Giovanni Falcone, the anti-Mafia judge in 1992.
Addiopizzo is a welcome antidote to the legend, providing upright businesses and stalwart shoppers a way to refuse to contribute to the protection money the Mafia used to extract.
These days, Sicily is so much more than Mafia. The Baroque Palazzo Gangi is still in private hands, and has managed all its restorations over the years without a penny of government money. Behind an unassuming façade lies a Versailles on a domestic scale; there are only five private residences like this in Europe, where all the furniture and objects are perfectly preserved. Entering the ballroom setting for the filming of The Leopard, starring Claudia Cardinale, gave me my first experience of room envy.
Gangi is a hilltop town set amid the rolling wheat fields and wooded valleys of central Sicily, a tangle of ancient streets and narrow dwellings about an hour’s drive south of the picturesque holiday resort of Cefalù.
Gangi was unknown to the world until Mayor Giuseppe Ferrarello was elected, eight years ago. Ferrarello tackled this tiny town’s problems by promoting its natural and cultural beauty. He decided on an unusual route to tackle the depopulation Gangi was experiencing in its historical centre. He offered houses at €1 to anyone who would commit to refurbishing them, and in doing so, has transformed the town’s economies.
Of course, I had to visit the wellhead from which, allegedly, all Polizzis spring – Polizzi Generosa – despite being unable to trace any direct antecedents in the town. I was lucky, because it gave me the opportunity of staying in an extraordinary guesthouse, owned by Australians, who have restored it in a mad labour of love.
A similar commitment ensures the survival of the carretto Siciliano – the Sicilian cart.
I spent a mad, mad day on a cart, drawn by a be-feathered, bejewelled and caparisoned horse, accompanied by a four-piece band and an overwhelming enthusiasm to keep the tradition alive. Once upon a time, the appearance of these colourful carts on the horizon, carrying goods from one rural location to another, would have been a break in the monotony of life and a cause for celebration.
This, ultimately, is the common theme of my discoveries; I found a thriving, thrusting modern Italy and ancient ways that coexist in harmony.
The highlights of my island journey were meeting the people who ensure the survival of ways of life and traditions that seem barely relevant to our society and how we live today. And I was amazed and grateful that after so many years and so many visits, Italy still managed to beguile and surprise me as much as ever.
A brief clarification regarding the coniglio all'ischitana, the rabbit stew which is Ischia's signature dish, and apologies to those who are squeamish at the idea of eating rabbit. (Giacomo's wife, despite having married an ischitano and having visited the island on countless occasions, after twenty years, to the great puzzlement of family and friends, steadfastly refuses to eat it!). Alex is told, by the ischitano owner of the restaurant she visits to sample the dish, that "Ischian women... traditionally got not even a morsel of the least favoured cut of the animal". Our own local ischitano here at Italia 500 has never come across this tradition. What normally happens, to this day, according to Giacomo, is that the meatiest parts of the rabbit are reserved for the children - the hind legs (la coscia di dietro) and the lower part of the back (la sella), the most sought after, to older children and teenagers, as they are growing (devono crescere) and need to eat more; the forelegs (la coscetta), to the youngest children as they are little and have little stomachs - and the less meaty parts, like the ribs and occasionally even the head (which is cut in half), are generally reserved for mamma and papà, nonno and nonna, or any other adult at the table, who will all insist that the less meaty parts are the most saporiti (flavoursome), and that picking and sucking at the pieces to extract the meat and the sauce is actually part of the fun. The intestines (gli intestini) - which are cut to a manageable size, then thoroughly washed, then placed in water together with lemon wedges for two hours, then wrapped around stalks of basil or parsley and secured with a toothpick, and then obviously cooked - and the liver (il fegato) are apportioned to those who like these - Italians also can be quite squeamish when it comes to food. No need to point out that bisogna usare le dita (fingers are de rigueur ). Ultimately however, when calculating the portions, one serves one rabbit for every four to five people so there's always plenty to go around and no one is ever "stuck" simply with the neck! A final note: switching from the meatiest parts to the less meaty parts is almost like a rite of passage into adulthood! To learn more about Ischia and il coniglio all'ischitana visit our series of blog articles dedicated to the island of Ischia.
Enough about rabbit stew, here is Alex Polizzi's Italian Islands (as soon as the series becomes available on DVD we will let you know):
Nel precedente articolo del nostro Blog abbiamo menzionato Andrea Camilleri e, gironzolando su YouTube, ci siamo imbattuti in questo documentario della BBC dedicato alla storia del genere noir italiano. Il documentario prende in esame le opere di, appunto, Andrea Camilleri, di due grandi scomparsi della letteratura italiana, Carlo Emilio Gadda e Leonardo Sciascia, di Giancarlo De Cataldo, l'autore di Romanzo criminale, di Barbara Baraldi, Massimo Carlotto e di Carlo Lucarelli, ed è molto interessante.
In our preceding Blog post we mentioned Andrea Camilleri and, wandering around YouTube, we came across this BBC documentary dedicated to the history of Italian crime fiction. The documentary examines works by, of course, Andrea Camilleri, by two great authors of Italian literature, now passed away, Carlo Emilio Gadda and Leonardo Sciascia, by Giancarlo De Cataldo, author of Romanzo criminale, by Barbara Baraldi, Massimo Carlotto and by Carlo Lucatelli, and is very interesting.
A proposito di Leonardo Sciascia, per coloro che non lo conoscessero, abbiamo caricato, in Pdf, un ottimo saggio scritto da Verina Jones dedicato a Sciascia, pubblicato in un libro interessantissimo del 1984: Writers and Society in Contemporary Italy: A Collection of Essays, edito da Michael Caesar e Peter Hainsworth. Il libro, reperibile su Amazon, contiene, oltre ad una sintesi della storia d'Italia dal dopoguerra agli anni '80, saggi dedicati alla Neo-avanguardia degli anni '60, ad Umberto Eco, Franco Fortini, Andrea Zanzotto, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Dario Fo, Dino Buzzati, Elsa Morante, e ad Italo Calvino.
Talking about Leonardo Sciascia, for those who are not familiar with him, we've uploaded, in Pdf format, an excellent essay written by Verina Jones dedicated to Sciascia, published in a very interesting 1984 book: Writers and Society in Contemporary Italy: A Collection of Essays, edited by Michael Caesar and Peter Hainsworth. The book, available at Amazon, contains, apart from a concise history of Italy from the post-war years to the 80's, essays dedicated to the avant-garde Italian literary movement of the 60's, to Umberto Eco, Franco Fortini, Andrea Zanzotto, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Dario Fo, Dino Buzzati, Elsa Morante, and to Italo Calvino.
È appena trascorsa la festa di Halloween e oggi, il primo novembre, in Italia, è la festa di Tutti i Santi (All Saints' Day), nota anche come Ognissanti. Domani invece, il 2 novembre, è la festa dei Defunti, o la festa dei Morti (All Souls' Day). Nel primo video in basso la simpatica Eleonora ci parla delle due feste. Il secondo filmato in basso invece è tratto da un bellissimo documentario chiamato Prove per una tragedia siciliana (Rehearsal for a Sicilian Tragedy) del 2009, che segue il viaggio dell'attore e regista italo-americano John Turturro in Sicilia, alla ricerca delle proprie origini. Nel filmato, l'autore che ha creato il personaggio del commissario Montalbano, Andrea Camilleri, ci descrive quanto fosse sentita e come si celebrava la festa dei Morti in Sicilia all'epoca in cui era bambino. Nel filmato le sue parole sono accompagnate dalle immagini dei corpi mummificati delle catacombe dei Cappuccini di Palermo, e termina il suo racconto con una frase di una nostalgia struggente: «Lentamente i morti persero la strada di casa».
Halloween has passed and today, the first of November, in Italy, it's All Saints' Day, known also as Ognissanti (lit. each Saint). Tomorrow, on the other hand, the second of November, is All Souls' Day. In the first clip below the lovely Eleonora tells us about the two festivities. Whereas the second clip below is taken from a very beautiful documentary called Rehearsal for a Sicilian Tragedy, released in 2009, which follows the journey of the italo-american actor and director John Turturro to Sicily, in search of his roots. In the clip, the author who created the character of Inspector Montalbano, Andrea Camilleri, describes to us how All Souls' Day was such a heartfelt festivity in Sicily and how it was celebrated at the time of his childhood. In the clip his words are accompanied by the images of the mummified corpses of the Capuchin Catacombs in Palermo, and he ends his story with a sentence of heart rending nostalgia: "Gradually the dead lost their way back home."
Nel 2012 il celebre e simpaticissimo critico d'arte inglese Andrew Graham-Dixon e l'altrettanto celebre e simpaticissimo chef italiano, ora residente a Londra, Giorgio Locatelli hanno preparato le valigie, hanno noleggiato, come si usa fare, una Maserati, e si sono recati in Sicilia alla scoperta delle delizie culinarie ed artistiche di questa meravigliosa regione per la quale nutrono una grande passione. Il risultato del loro viaggio è la serie Sicily Unpacked, composta di tre episodi: Hidden Treasure; Madonna Vasa Vasa; e Fishing Treasures. Un avvertimento: la serie è bellissima e appena la guarderete vi verrà immediatamente voglia di partire per la Sicilia!!! Qualcuno ha caricato le tre puntate su Dailymotion e le abbiamo ripubblicate in basso. Potete acquistare la serie completa in DVD da Fishpond. Abbiamo caricato anche una puntata del 2012 di Excess Baggage, un programma radiofonico della BBC 4, nella quale Andrew Graham-Dixon parla della serie Sicily Unpacked e del suo amore per la Sicilia.
Italy Unpacked (Series 1)
Un anno dopo aver girato Sicily Unpacked i nostri intrepidi eroi, Andrew Graham-Dixon e Giorgio Locatelli, si sono recati ancora una volta in Italia, a bordo della loro amatissima Maserati, per scoprire le prelibatezze culinarie e le bellezze artistiche dell'Emilia Romagna, della Lombardia e del Piemonte. Il risultato è un'altra serie di tre puntate (The Art of the Feast [Emilia Romagna]; Looking to the Future [Lombardia]; e Land of Many Treasures [Piemonte]) dal titolo abbastanza curioso: Italy Unpacked. All'epoca ci siamo chiesti: « Ma che fine hanno fatto le altre regioni? »; « È un complotto separatista della BBC? ». Abbiamo scoperto solo più tardi che i nostri simpatici eroi avevano in mente di girare tre serie di Italy Unpacked: la prima dedicata all'Italia del nord, più o meno; la seconda, alle regioni che danno sul mar Tirreno; e la terza, alle regioni che danno sul mare Adriatico, a dispetto della solita suddivisione dell'Italia in Italia del nord, del centro, del sud, e delle isole. Quindi sarebbe meglio chiamare questa serie: Italy Unpacked, Series 1. Ancora una volta, è una serie stupenda e tanto vale prenotare subito i voli per l'Italia anche se non l'avete ancora vista! Qualcuno ha caricato le prime due puntate complete su YouTube e la terza su Dailymotion, ma le abbiamo ripubblicate in basso per risparmiarvi la pubblicità. Potete, o meglio, dovete acquistare la serie completa in DVD, perché è bellisima e la troverete da JB Hifi.
Italy Unpacked (Series 2)
Inizio 2014 ed ecco la seconda serie di Italy Unpacked, dedicata alle regioni tirreniche. Andrew, con qualche capello bianco in più, Giorgio, con qualche capello bianco in meno, si recano in Liguria e Toscana (In the Footsteps of Poets), nel Lazio (A Home Away From Rome); e in Campania e Calabria (In the Heat of the Day): tre ore di incanto assoluto!!!!!!!! Ecco i tre episodi che sono stati caricati su YouTube. La serie è disponibile in DVD visitando il sito internet di Andrew Graham-Dixon e facendone richiesta.
Italy Unpacked (Series 3)
Quando verrà girata la terza serie di Italy Unpacked dedicata all"Italia adriatica? Ecco cosa ha scritto Andrew sulla sua pagina Facebook a febbraio:
At Italia 500 we've been offering Italian courses, in Sydney, since 1995 and one of the most beautiful aspects of learning Italian is that it opens the door to a culture of unrivalled richness and diversity. In this blog we'll be sharing some of our favourite books, movies, places in Italy to visit, music, links to podcasts, information about local and international Italian themed events, and the odd "personal" view, in the hope that it will encourage you to delve further into a culture which continues to inspire us and millions of people all over the world.